Google to acquire Skybox satellite imaging firm for US$500 million cash…as DigitalGlobe gets hi-res clearance

by | Jun 12, 2014 | History, Satellites, Technology | 0 comments

While rumours about the move had been circulating for some time, it was finally confirmed on 10 June 2014 that the Internet search engine giant Google had made a successful bid to acquire the satellite imaging constellation firm Skybox.  Google has offered US$500 million in cash for the firm, officially with the view to “improve internet access and disaster relief”.

Google Maps is known to make extensive use of satellite imagery in its application, while the controversial street view system now allows full visual access to road and building imagery on the ground.  To date the US-based commercial imagery provider Skybox has only launched one satellite, Skysat-1,  but eventually plans to launch a constellation to provide near real time imagery and video coverage of locations from orbit.

Google’s space acquisitions is unlikely to end there.  Sky News reports that the firm is in discussion with Virgin Galactic over taking a major stake in that firm.

Soon after this announcement, the present leader in digital satellite imagery, DigitalGlobe, received clearance from the US authorities to market very high resolution (sub-0.5m) imagery commercially to the world – albeit that the US government retains the right to impose “shutter control” for images of sensitive areas e.g. US military installations etc.   The firm’s WorldView 3 spacecraft which is due to be launched in August this year, is reported to be able to take panchromatic images up to a ground resolution of o.3m. Space News gives more detail here.


About Seradata

Seradata produce the renowned Seradata database. Trusted by over 100 of the world’s leading Space organisations, Seradata is a fully queryable database used for market analysis, failure/risk assessment, spectrum analysis and space situational awareness (SSA).

For more information go to

Related Articles




nasaspacexecoreviewsissesaArianespacevideochinaFalcon 9v1.2FT Block 525virgin galacticULAfalcon 9RoscosmosevaDGAspacewalkaviation weekaressoyuzIGTInternational Space StationRocket LabBeidouawardsBlue OriginspaceStarlinkSatellite broadcastingrussiamoonAirbus DSboeingISROCargo Return VehiclemarsblogresearchOneWebspaceshiptwojaxaorionmarsimpactdelayhyperbolaEutelsatdemocratrocketlunarhypertextobamagoogle lunar prizelaunchVegaSESbarack obamaconstellationtourismnorthfiguresthales alenia spacespaceflightIntelsatnode 2fundedRaymond Lygo2009Lockheed MartinExpress MD-2Elon MuskAtlas Vromess2dassault aviationaviationLucy2008wk2sstlukradiomissilesuborbitaldocking portexplorationAriane 5 ECAVirgin OrbittestinternetLong March 2D/2sts-122Ariane 5Northrop GrummanSLSChina Manned Space EngineeringElectronflightspace tourism2010cotsnewspapermissile defensegalileospaceportExpress AMU 1Long March 4Cbuildspace stationaltairsoyuz 2-1aProton Minternational astronautical congressshuttlespace shuttleEuropean Space AgencyLauncherOneCosmosIntelsat 23scaled compositesnew yorkrulesAriane 6hanleybudgetatvVietnamshenzhoucongressMojaveboldenLong March 2COrbital ATKInmarsatcnesnew shepardiaclunar landerGuiana Space CenterkscApollolawsSpace Systems/LoralUK Space AgencyLong March 4BKuaizhou 1AILSprotonUS Air ForceTalulah RileydarpaElectron KSFalcon 9v1.2 Block 5Vega CeuAstriumSkylonpicturebaseusaastronautdragonlanderfiveeventTelesatNorth KoreaSSLAprilSNC50thinterviewLong MarchSea LaunchfalconWednesdaycustomerlinkatlantissuccessor

Stay Informed with Seradata

Stay informed on the latest news, insights, and more from Seradata by signing up for our newsletter.