Google said late on Tuesday it agreed to buy satellite start-up firm Skybox Imaging for $500 million in cash.
Google said Skybox’s satellites will help keep Google Maps accurate with up-to-date imagery.
In time, Google said it hopes that Skybox’s team and technology will also be able to help improve internet access and disaster relief — areas that Google said it has long been interested in.
Skybox said on its website that it builds satellites, writes code, and deploys data centres.
In its statement, Skybox said the time was right “to join a company who can challenge us to think even bigger and bolder, and who can support us in accelerating our ambitious vision.”
Skybox said it had built and launched the world’s smallest high¬-resolution imaging satellite, which collects images and video every day.
“We have built an incredible team and empowered them to push the state-of-the-art in imaging to new heights,” said Skybox.