Japan’s Metaps and Space Shift team up for big data business from space

Image credit: NASA Goddard Photo and Video via FindCC
Image credit: NASA Goddard Photo and Video via FindCC

This is the abridged version of our original article in Japanese.

Tokyo-based Metaps, the company that provides an app monetization platform using artificial intelligence, announced today that it has teamed up with Space Shift to start a joint study on big data analytic systems in relation to ultra-micro satellites. Both companies aim to develop life supporting services based on the joint study’s results.

Space Shift develops space ventures via micro satellites, and CEO Naruo Kanemoto is serving Silicon Valley-based space funeral startup Elysium Space’s business development.

Topical issues in the big data business sector include Google’s acquisition of Nest, which will collect household temperature variation data via a smart thermostat device. Google also acquired satellite startup Skybox Imaging in June.

One investor told The Bridge that he is interested in the sector because satellites have been miniaturized and simplified to the point that even startups can get involved in satellite development. The space funeral service that Metaps will provide with Space Shift will employ a satellite weighing less than 100 kilograms (220 lb.).

What will happen with this initiative? Regarding the Nest acquisition, it can be adopted into an energy related business if it can predict fuel consumption based on the collected temperature variation data. Smart cars being developed by Tesla or Google will also provide big data for transport, which will make it possible to foresee traffic jams or provide car owners with expendable supplies on time when needed. Micro satellites will allow the collection of a wide range of data, but the impact this will have on our lives is hard to imagine.

Metaps CEO Katsuaki Sato explained his business outlook:

Having bought out an app store survey and analytics company, we realized that there are some interesting tendencies in the global app store ranking. One is every market has a regularity, and the other thing is we can find a correlation between the app store ranking and various events such as share price variation. So we think that the future can be predictable if we can grab the aforementioned tendencies.

We think that this methodology can be adapted to various things in the world as well as app store ranking. The space industry has not adopted IT solutions so much but can cover many variations in a wider range than any other industry. “Considering our planet as a single market” is our company policy. Based on that, I thought we will start a space venture sooner or later, and we decided to partner with Space Shift as a first step.

We will feature Metaps again when more information become available.