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An aerial imagery success story: Nearmap

Australia’s Parliament House in Canberra as captured by an oblique view from Nearmap.

For the past decade, Nearmap has dominated the aerial imagery market and shows no signs of slowing down.

An Australian success story, Nearmap launched in 2008 and is a pioneer in the aerial imagery industry. Nearmap captures, manages and delivers some of the most frequently-updated imagery, which allows organisations of all kinds to make informed decisions. Ahead of their appearance at Locate17 and ISDE this April, Nearmap spoke to SpatialSource to discuss their key to success and their advances into 3D.

Capturing aerial photos at 7cm per pixel, Nearmap’s images are several times clearer than on offer from satellites, and with planes capturing the Australian mainland every few months, businesses have access to the latest, clearest imagery to help do their job.

Demonstrating reality at its finest [resolution]

This April, Nearmap will be on deck at the Locate17 Conference and Digital Earth Symposium taking place 3-6 April at Sydney newly re-opened convention centre. Visitors will have the unique opportunity to see and experience the power of Nearmap first-hand alongside the company’s key technical personnel.

Nearmap’s CTO Paul Lapstun will be one of the distinguished plenary speakers on the 6th of April, where he’ll be talking about “Reality as a Service,” expanding on Nearmap’s scalable reality capture platform and investments into 3D technology. At the Nearmap stand, there will also be free product demos, and the team will be on hand to answer any questions about Nearmap or aerial imagery and location content in general.

Apple’s new spaceship-like headquaters, named Apple Park and depicted here, opens in April 2017 in Cupertino, California. Source: Nearmap.

Nearmap’s, Vice President and Managing Director, John Biviano said the demand for high resolution aerial imagery continues to grow locally and aboard.

“We continue to see a strong appetite for location content with a more recent trend towards providing 3D reality capture on a large scale, processed quickly,” Biviano said. “We are also seeing growing demand for data insights that are overlaid on aerial images to provide a fuller picture.”

A clear winner

Since launching in the United States in 2014, Nearmap has continued to grow from strength-to-strength to provide some of the clearest imagery available to a growing list of clients. Adapting the business model that’s worked so well in Australia, Nearmap effectively disrupted the aerial imagery industry in the US. With the cost of capture significantly lower than anything else on the market, Nearmap can update surveys more frequently and its subscription model has effectively opened up imagery to a wider band of organisations.

“This has all contributed to the strong foundation and positive return on investment that we’re now seeing,” Biviano explained. “Our offering has a broad appeal, which means we partner with businesses across almost every sector.”

“For example, insurance companies are using Nearmap to assess claims; construction companies are using it to monitor the progress of developments; solar companies are using it to provide quotes and identify areas to target for new business; telecommunications companies are using it for network design and deployment; and local government agencies are using us to identify illegal developments.”

“We expect to see these sectors continue to grow as more businesses realise the benefits of Nearmap.”

In February 2017, the Swan Valley wine region in Western Australia was declared a natural disaster zone after floods caused widespread damage.  Nearmap caught these exclusive before and after images revealing the true extent of the damage left behind by the recent flooding in the region.

With so many emerging remote sensing methods, what makes Nearmap stand apart is their ability to offer an extensive catalogue of high resolution imagery many times clearer than satellites.

Nearmap have captured 88% of Australia’s population and 68% in the US, including historical images dating back to as early as 2007 in some areas.

Be sure to check out the comprehensiveness and quality of Nearmap’s imagery at the Locate17 Conference and Digital Earth Symposium taking place 3-6 April in Sydney.

A year of growth and of 3D

Asked what Nearmap’s key priorities are for 2017, John Biviano identified three key areas: continue to grow business in Australia, drive strong growth in the US, and continue to invest in technology to create new markets.

In terms of the latter, Nearmap are specifically looking to expand investment in 3D products to deliver richer data and drive further expansion into new industry sectors.

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