Humans have gazed up at the stars since the beginning of time. At SkyFi, we think it’s time to view the world from a different lens — and we want you to see what the stars see. SkyFi doesn’t just allow you to see anywhere in the world exactly as a satellite sees it, it allows you to download those images with a few swipes on your phone, desktop or tablet. That’s the short pitch, but what does it mean for you? We’d like you to one day consider SkyFi as your eyes in the sky — a whole new way to look at the world.
Satellite Imagery: The State of Things
Unless you’re in or around the industry, satellite imaging probably isn’t something you think about every day — and we don’t blame you for that. Our friend Joe Morrison over at satellite provider Umbra puts it plainly:
“Have you ever tried to purchase a satellite image? It’s closer to a hostage negotiation than a sales transaction. There will be email introductions, phone calls, lists of demands, let-me-get-back-to-you-on-thats, appeals to lawyers, requests for paperwork, and ultimately…a ransom. Often, the captive is never released.”
What Joe’s alluding to here is a longstanding frustration about accessing images that could (and should) be easy to download. Just about everyone with a smartphone has access to outdated satellite images via services like Google Earth, and it’s been that way for going on two decades. But buying recent, high-resolution satellite imagery for yourself? Or tasking a satellite to capture a photo in the future? That seems more out of reach than the satellites themselves, which is exactly what we’re seeking to change.
Across industries as diverse as energy production and hunting pirates, SkyFi co-founder Bill Perkins came to understand the value of remote sensing — or the acquisition of info about an object or place without making physical contact — from firsthand experience. Through his various business ventures, he often pondered questions like, “How many drilling crews are working at a particular moment? How many modern-day pirates have turned off their tracking beacons to fish illegally (often to the detriment of the ecosystem)?” Remote sensing answers those questions with hard, visual data.
But to get that data, Bill and his team were constantly faced with meetings, Zoom calls, contracts, licensing agreements, more Zoom calls, and more meetings. “This is crazy,” Bill said. “Why are we meeting to discuss this? I should be able to do all of this on my phone.”
What SkyFi Does
So that’s how SkyFi was born. Using just your phone, desktop or tablet, SkyFi empowers you to command a satellite’s camera (actually, a camera on one of more than 70 in-network satellites) with just a few taps. From the easy-to-use app interface, you can choose literally any place on planet Earth and SkyFi will not only deliver a high-resolution image of that place, you can buy that image and keep it forever, whether you’re using it to solve real-world problems or memorializing it on your living room wall.
More than that, you have options. SkyFi doesn’t just enable you to pick a place, you can dictate the date and time frame of your desired image capture as well. Want to see what Paris looks like at night? Done. Prefer a hyperspectral shot, a video, or a stereo image for use in your 3D modeling project? SkyFi does all of that too, with equally friendly pricing and multiple delivery options to boot.
How Satellite Imagery Can Help You
For tech-savvy business minds, innovators, entrepreneurs and everyday explorers, the existence of SkyFi implies that high-quality remote sensing data is no longer the exclusive domain of massive, inaccessible defense enterprises. Across industries, access to hyper-detailed satellite imagery will be a game changer when it comes to surveying land, predicting crop yields, reviewing infrastructure projects or gauging property value. SkyFi can even lend a hand in tracking vital environmental trends, such as wildfires or deforestation.
But when we talk about accessibility, we don’t just mean accessibility for businesses. Having access to a space-eye view can lend a whole new perspective on your next vacation, epic camping trip, hiking journey or once-in-a-lifetime wedding plans. Can’t go there physically? Let SkyFi bring it to you.
Put simply, we want to make high-resolution satellite photos and videos available to everyone. And that’s not just a dream — it’s a reality that’s also our mission. If you’re reading this, congratulations — you just became part of that mission too.
So welcome to the team. It’s going to be a fun ride.
Dan has been a freelance lifestyle writer and small business owner for over a decade. In that time, he’s been fortunate to collaborate with brands and publishers including Canon Inc., Business.com, Fortune, Samsung, Verizon and many more.
Sources Medium — Joe Morrison: The Commercial Satellite Imagery Business Model Is Broken