Google buys satellite company Skybox Imaging for $500 million

June 10, 2014, 6:27 PM UTC
Tony Avelar/Bloomberg—Getty Images

Google (GOOG) is about to increase its foothold on outer space tech.

The Internet giant has purchased satellite company Skybox Imaging for $500 million, according to a statement.

The company will reportedly first use the acquisition to improve its imagery for digital maps. Down the road, Google may also use the company to bring the Internet to more places around the world.

“Skybox’s satellites will help keep Google Maps accurate with up-to-date imagery. Over time, we also hope that Skybox’s team and technology will be able to help improve Internet access and disaster relief — areas Google has long been interested in,” Google said.

Skybox, meanwhile, praised the new partnership: “We both believe in making information (especially accurate geospatial information) accessible and useful,” the company announced on its blog.

Skybox added that the agreement “hasn’t closed yet,” while Google mentioned the transaction is still “subject to customary closing conditions,” including U.S. regulatory approvals.