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  • Writer's pictureAmit Kukreja

Palantir Bringing Intelligence and operations to the Edge with Skykit

Palantir is getting into the hardware game.

Palantir has developed a new product which they are calling SKYKIT.

Skykit comes pre loaded with Palantir software. Rather than loading up windows on a laptop, it immediately launches Metaconstelation as the operating system for example. Which is using real-time satellite imagery to be able to make decisions from these new devices.

Here is what Palantir describes these Kits as:

  • Sky kit is built for disconnected adverse hostile and extreme environments.

  • It is a self-contained Intelligence Center giving soldiers an advantage over adversaries.

  • Sky kit contains dual integrated monitors, on-board battery packs to power the entire unit for days -fully disconnected, and a secure storage area for the included devices.

  • Sky kit includes satellite Communications with commercial and government options available.

  • Ruggedized laptop with Palantir software pre-installed.

  • Quadcopter drone running computer vision algorithms via Palantir AIP.

  • Trail cam Nano also running detection algorithms on board the device.

  • The sky kit Hardware is powered by Palantir software.

Edge computing (or IoT edge processing) refers to taking action on data as near to the source as possible rather than in a central, remote data center, to reduce latency and bandwidth use. Simply meaning that you don't need to be connected to a centralized server or a particular Cloud that needs internet connection. When it's “at the edge” it's on the device, so all the data integration and all the real-time data updates you need are happening in one place as close to the source as possible.

As a result of that, an Incredible use case for Mission critical situations is created. In times of war, perhaps there is no internet connection but you still need to be making decisions. Edge computing, or specifically this Skykit might be the solution.

Skykit comes with commodity sensors and can integrate with other sensor capabilities enabling using your users to operationalize their own data. so it seems like this is applicable with other pieces of software, not just Palantir.

Palantir Metaconstellation is installed on Skykit, enabling users to analyze satellite imagery rapidly from anywhere in the world. Palantir AIP Powers the computer vision algorithms deployed on board the devices.

Sky kit has a modular design with variants for different use cases.

“Skykit L” is a lightweight backpack form factor.

“Sky kit S” is for sea and Maritime use.

Palantir has worked with hardware companies in the past.

Palantir has partnered with companies like Satellogic where satellites go into the sky and they bring back real-time data. So getting into an intelligence and operations business at the edge along with their business of what they've been able to do in space is something that makes sense to me. It's something that's cohesive, it's something that obviously there seems to be a market for if they develop this product.

With hardware comes fixed costs of building products. We do not know how much these products cost or the margins on these Skykits. I'm not sure if those fixed costs are really relevant or if they are minute and won't be material to the bottom line at the moment.

We do know that these will have an impact on capex. It might only make sense to build these products if they know they can sell them.

I don't think they're gonna have a bunch of Sky kits on the Shelf. These are probably very particularized solutions for certain agencies and certain parts of the military or the government across the world that if they say “Hey Palantir, we need 20 Skykits”, Palantir makes them on demand.

It's important that they make their money back on this Hardware, especially right now, and Palantir understands that.

Broader Applications

Palantir obviously wants to make the defense business a really big business. You know we've talked about how defense alone might be worth $100 billion dollars in TAM.

Alex Karp has said government business is worth the ballpark of a $900 billion dollar TAM.

Obviously there is a potential market out there for things like this.

A lot of governments want to protect their data. Data that must be operationalized. Potentially, having this one kit that comes fully loaded could be an attractive offer.

Interesting concept to have a piece of Hardware integrated with governmental intelligence operations. Using data on the hardware itself via the devices Palantir sold with AI at the edge being the sort of overarching feature of this entire Skykit product is very intriguing.

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