Satellite Imagery is Not Becoming a Commodity

Photo by Hakan Yalcin on Unsplash

If Satellite Imagery Were Becoming Commoditized, You Could Buy It

  • Hopefully you have already established close relationships with sales people at one of the major satellite imagery suppliers. If not, you’re gonna have a bad time. Either way, get ready to send some emails.
  • Price depends on the company, last quarter’s sales numbers, this quarter’s sales numbers, the clout of the sales person, and the astral alignment of your horoscope. You’re about to spend anywhere between a few hundred dollars for an archival image to several thousand for a tasked image. That is, if they let you buy anything at all.
  • I would budget a few weeks to a few months for this adventure if I were you.
  • Are you familiar with File Transfer Protocol?

Satellite Imagery Suppliers are Like Dairy Farms

Vertically integrated ice cream is the best ice cream.

Not All Satellite Imagery is Created Equal

Less of an Oddity, but Still Not a Commodity

  • Verify human activity and natural capital on a global scale, even at low fidelity?
  • Characterize the extent and severity of natural disasters as they unfold in real time anywhere on Earth?
  • Monitor conditions on the ground in places made inaccessible due to geography or political regime?
  • Inventory land use and track its changes over time?

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Comedic relief at Umbra. Writing about maps and the people that make them. For inquiries: jrmorrison.jrm [at] gmail [dot] com

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Joe Morrison

Joe Morrison

Comedic relief at Umbra. Writing about maps and the people that make them. For inquiries: jrmorrison.jrm [at] gmail [dot] com

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