The new TrackingPoint rifle is about to hit the shelves on Wednesday. This revolutionary gun uses lasers and computers to help shooters aim, enabling amateur shooters to hit targets at 500 yards on the first try.
The rifle’s scope uses a heads-up display similar to what you might see in a fighter pilot’s cockpit. The scope relays information that can enhance the shooter’s aim without being overly distracting or obscuring vision. The rifle is so advanced, in fact, that the rifle will not fire immediately when the shooter pulls the trigger. Rather, the rifle will wait until the rifle has been lined up to the exact location.
“Think of it like a smart rifle. You have a smart car you; you got a smartphone; well, now we have a smart rifle," said Jason Schauble, the president of TrackingPoint. Like all other smart devices, the TrackingPoint rifle is Wi-Fi capable. Users can transmit data to an iPad or similar device to relive the shots or post the shots on YouTube.
Schauble said that the younger generation of shooters "like[s] to post videos; they like to be in constant communication with groups or networks. This kind of technology, in addition to making shooting more fun for them, also allows shooting to be something that they share with others."
Another similarity between the rifle and a smart car is the price tag. At $22,000 a piece, some gun owners may have to take out a loan to purchase this state-of-the-art rifle.
Not all gun owners are excited about the high-tech gadgetry. Chris Wilbratte, a hunter interviewed by NPR, said, "It's the traditional shooting fish in a barrel or the sitting duck. I mean, there's no skill in it, right? It's just you point, you let the weapons system do its thing and you pull the trigger and now you've killed a deer. There's no skill.”
Still, that hasn’t stopped gun fans from clamoring for the rifle. Schauble said that there is already an “overwhelming” waiting list for the rifle, which also has password protected features and a built-in laser rangefinder.
Wilbratte may be correct in that the rifle takes skill out of the equation, but will military personnel and leisure shooters really put up a fuss when they hit the target every single time?