Trimble to acquire SketchUp and 3D Warehouse

I am floored! We talk all the time about the use of SketchUp in building out virtual worlds and have just taken for granted that it was tied in to Google’s draw for Earth and Maps. Apparently that was not such a given.

Trimble will be adding SketchUp and the 3D Warehouse to its growing pantheon of applications. There are of course short and long term questions from a users perspective regarding the availability of the free version, the licensing costs for the Pro version, the terms of use/copyright rights for 3D Warehouse content, and of course the direction of the software in the future. On the other hand, I am excited about the potential for a tool with the easy to use UI of SketchUp with a better/tighter coupling with GIS applications. Or, how about the ability to use data from existing Trimble hardware and software to streamline model generation.

The SketchUp acquisition is just the most recent in a line of notable acquisitions that include eCognition for Remote Sensing and PeopleNet for logistics, as well as others that link to SketchUp’s potential such as BIM and StruCAD.

These software trends have been on top of Trimble’s growing GNSS and a related hardware offerings.


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Jesse is Instructor in Geography and a PhD candidate in Geography focusing on the integration of phenomenology and geospatial technologies to study prehistoric cultural landscape. He is a GIS Professional and Registered Professional Archaeologist and holds an MA in Geography and a BS in Anthropology with a concentration in archaeology.