Soccer Cameras: To Lease or To Own?

Is it better to own or to lease cameras for recording soccer games?

by Charles LaCalle

Charles works with Trace to educate teams and parents on using video effectively for player development and recruiting.

Trace is an all-in-one game film subscription service. The most competitive clubs in U.S. youth soccer subscribe to Trace to access advanced tools for recording soccer games, analyzing game footage, and sharing highlights with college recruiters. 

New Trace customers often ask why we offer a subscription service versus just selling a camera. It can be confusing, at first, to understand why you’d pay for a subscription but not own the equipment. But as any seasoned club will tell you, there is much less stress when leasing equipment and a lot more potential hassles that come along with owning equipment. 

Why Leasing Is Better Than Owning Equipment

Leasing = less maintenance = less stress.
At Trace, we’re very serious about soccer teams not having to worry about anything off the field. Our all-inclusive equipment subscription is part of that commitment which is why it includes everything you need to get started (Camera, Camera Case, Tripod, Tripod Case and Sandbags). If anything malfunctions, we just replace it for you.  If you lose a sensor or the camera, you will be charged a replacement fee, but you’ll get a replacement in the mail very quickly. By leasing vs. owning, we help ensure your Tracing is never interrupted, minimize distractions and empower you to capture all of your player highlights.

All camera systems are effectively leased.
While Trace is the top-rated camera system because of its advanced software, there are other cameras that record soccer games. VEO, for instance, is a European company that sells cameras for a wide variety of sports. With this system, users get to own the camera, but a subscription is required to utilize the camera’s capabilities. So ultimately, users both purchase a camera and lease/subscribe to the software. If you want to upgrade your camera, you will purchase an entirely new unit.

Ownership with teams/clubs can be complicated.
We want to avoid conflicts that can arise when determining who owns the equipment. Trace is designed for teams, and teams are constantly evolving, with players joining or leaving from season to season. When teams own expensive equipment, especially if parents pay for part of it, there can be major strife when athletes move to new teams. Who owns the equipment? Should parents get refunded if new players join the team and then use the old camera? These seem like minor issues, but they can cause major headaches for soccer clubs.  

Automatic upgrades as technology advances.
How many old iPhones do you have in your drawers? When you buy an iPhone, you know that in a matter of years you’ll be buying a whole new device because technology has advanced. With camera systems like Trace, this is also the case. Our hardware team at Trace is constantly working to stay on the cutting edge of video, GPS, and computer vision technology. As those advances happen, you benefit from leased equipment because next season you’ll receive top-of-the-line equipment, rather than trying to maximize the time you use an outdated camera you own. 

Leasing is better for products that depreciate in value.
As anyone in business knows, it’s mostly better to lease (vs. own) products that depreciate in value. While our team believes we have the most valuable soccer camera on the market :), all cameras (and electronics in general) depreciate in value very quickly because of the pace of innovation. If you’ve visited a competitive soccer club equipment room, you’ll likely see shelves stuffed with outdated cameras. Coaches can’t sell older models, and parents and players always want the newest technology. Leasing ensures your team always has the latest and greatest technology. 

Subscription services offer a better customer experience.
With a subscription, a business has to continually earn the loyalty of its customers. This is why we strive to provide a streamlined, effortless experience. This is also why our customer service team works 24/7 to respond to all requests, usually within minutes of receiving them. Trace is your partner, and we want you to have a great experience. 

When it comes to soccer camera systems, leasing is the preferred method for most clubs because coaches want to focus all their attention on developing amazing players. 

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