Google acquires satellite company Skybox for $500M

Google acquires satellite company Skybox for $500M

Summary: Google said it plans to use Skybox's satellites to keep Google Maps accurate with up-to-date imagery and eventually for work with disaster relief.

TOPICS: Google
Image via Skybox

Google announced that it has acquired Skybox Imaging for $500 million in cash. 

Skybox is a Mountain View, California-based private sector satellite maker. Its satellites record and provide access to high-definition video of landscapes and detailed imagery — and Google hopes to use them keep its Maps application up to date.

Google also said it plans to eventually use the satellites to help improve Internet access and disaster relief, areas the company said it has long been interested. 

Another area where Google could use the Skybox tech is data analysis. Skybox offers analytics services based on data gleaned from the aggregation of thousands of its image collections.

But the acquisition clearly shows Google's intention to gain a strong footing in the sky. The Internet giant recently acquired Titan Aerospace, a company that makes high-flying, high-altitude solar atmospheric satellites. Combing the muscle of the two companies might be part of Google's larger mission to use unmanned machines to work primarily for Google Maps, Earth, or other projects that require the collection of aerial images.

Then again, a hint in the Skybox blog suggests self-driving cars could also be part of the acquisition equation:

"Skybox and Google share more than just a zip code. We both believe in making information (especially accurate geospatial information) accessible and useful. And to do this, we're both willing to tackle problems head on — whether it's building cars that drive themselves or designing our own satellites from scratch."

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Topic: Google

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  • Wasting share holders money for fancy projects...

    • If Google splashing cash like this surprises any shareholders

      Then maybe they should have done some research before their investment.

      For others, Google's rampant ride around technology is interesting.
  • Google acquires satellite company Skybox for $500M

    Now Google can spy on you in the real world instead of just online.
    • Someone is jealous

      Poor LD......
      • Come on, daikon

        You have to admit that was pretty good.
  • Trolls are out in force -

    Must be pay day at Burson Marstellar.

    Shame neither Loverock nor Owl bothered to read the article, or they could even have been interesting trolls. For a change.

    This move will certainly help the mapping operation - already far superior to Microshaft's, as well as helping other projects, perhaps including the driverless car.

    Shareholders should be happy; Google already has enough mass in satellites to be able to sublet profitably to other companies who need them. Like Microshaft, for example.
    • Agreed, you trolls are out in force, and this acquisition bothers you,

      to be sure.

      You're already trying to spin this as some negative for MS, which we've learned means you don't see this as any type of positive for Google, and in fact don't see it as any type of injury to MS.

      You're so transparent, I wonder why you even bother anymore.

      • funny. lots of us feel the same way

        About yourself, lovecrock and fowl:net

        If it's an article about anything google, all three will make or support negative remark, it's as predictable as the moon, if it's about Microsoft, all three of you will make positive remarks. regardless of what the article is about.

        So here we are on a Google post with nothing at all to do with Microsoft and all three of you have in the past shown a remarkable hatred of Google felt obliged to comment nastily in ignorance.

        You critique them very harshly indeed, considering your chosen hero tech company is a twice convicted predatory monopolist with a long history of both privacy and security issues.... which you ignore completely when someone else points them out.

        last time I checked, Google have not had to pay billions in fines for illegal behaviour every..the same cannot be said for your chosen heroes..