The line between vendors of geospatial software and providers of geospatial data is increasingly blurred, as more companies either provide both or partner with complementary companies. An example is a new joint offering among Harris Geospatial Solutions, DigitalGlobe, and Esri. The emphasis in the geospatial industry is increasingly on easy-to-use mobile applications that can be deployed on all major platforms, ingest external data, and run offline.
For this seventh and final installment in this series, I interviewed Peter Batty, CTO of the Geospatial Division of Ubisense, and Stuart Blundell, Director of Strategy and Business Development for Harris Geospatial Solutions, a business unit within the Harris Space and Intelligence segment of the Harris Corporation. Between them, they have more than 60 years of experience in the geospatial industry.
This series has been exploring the offerings of a wide range of geospatial companies, addressing different problems in different verticals and often focused on very specific application areas and markets. This diversity shows that geospatial technology has been maturing and becoming more commoditized, says Batty. His company is working on Web and mobile solutions, mainly for utilities and communication companies, using a lot of open source software.
Batty, who was previously CTO at Intergraph and at GE Smallworld, has been quite involved in open source software in the past decade. He sees the possibility of Ubisense expanding in the future into new markets that share key characteristics with utilities and telecoms, such as local government or transportation, a space in which he has worked for a very long time. “We have a Web and mobile application called myWorld that addresses that market,” he says. “We really try to deliver applications that leverage geospatial data and are simple to use for the 95% of the people in an organization who don’t know how to use GIS, such as field technicians, operations people, and customer service representatives.”