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PlanetWatch licenses: news and explanations

PlanetWatch licenses: news and explanations

A few weeks ago, we introduced a license scheme for PlanetWatchers. Following a blog post and an AMA session on this topic, we feel that some further explanation of the rationale and the benefits of this scheme is needed, so let’s do it. 

Let’s start with some news:

  • The current offer for PlanetWatch licenses, which includes some free PLANETS, will expire on June 3rd at 23:59 CET. Following that time, license prices will not change but there will be no free tokens included. 
  • As of today, you will be able to purchase licenses for any sensor type (Type 1, Type 2, Type 3 and Type 4). The reason why we didn’t open all license sales from the start is because we felt we should first make sure that sensors for all types would be available at reasonable prices and within a definite time frame. Details on sensor pricing and schedules will be published on our website. 
  • After our listing on Bitfinex, you will be able to pay for licenses either in euros or in PLANETS.

BREAKING NEWS

  • Type 1: next week, 10 Airqino sensors will be up for sale at a special PlanetWatch price (European customers only). Check our website and social media channels for details and updates. Only owners of PlanetWatch licenses will be allowed to buy Airqino at that price. The ten available devices will be allocated according to the order number of license purchases, while stocks last. According to the manufacturer, 250 additional Airqinos will be available before the end of the summer. They are working to achieve the necessary certifications for the US market as soon as possible.
  • Type 2 and 3: We are onboarding new sensors. We anticipate that some devices will be available during the summer or by October at the latest. Again, check our website and social media channels for details and updates.

So, what is the rationale for our licensing system and why do we believe this is the best way to deliver value to the community?

Here is what we are good at:  

  • Testing the performance of environmental sensors, 
  • Designing IoT sensor networks and incentivizing communities to help deploy them,
  • Developing advanced tools and algorithms to gather, validate, record and reward streams via the Algorand blockchain
  • Analyzing datasets, extracting useful information, building and monetizing data products. 

We are no hardware production specialists or logistics experts. As it makes no sense for us to sell hardware and get involved with all related challenges, we developed a business model which monetizes what we do best and allows PlanetWatchers to buy approved hardware on the open market at the best price. As we have already proven with Atmotube PRO, we leverage the PlanetWatch brand to negotiate special PlanetWatch discounts from manufacturers whenever this is possible. 

Some people are comparing our project to crypto mining schemes and from this perspective they do not see the value behind PlanetWatch licenses. Before explaining what licenses pay for, I should say very clearly that we are NOT a mining scheme. We are in the business of generating environmental data which help PlanetWatchers and their communities protect their health and raise awareness of environmental challenges. And we provide PLANETS incentives to do that, which will soon be redeemable towards a range of useful products and services. 

Having said that, if  you compare PlanetWatch to other projects which leverage communities to deploy IoT networks, you should notice that PlanetWatch’s share of PLANETS rewards is just 20%, which is typically lower than what other projects charge. Also, the long-term PLANETS earning potential for PlanetWatchers will be boosted when our B2B data products will hit the market, as sensor owners are entitled to a fraction (in PLANETS) of sales proceeds when data from their sensors are monetized. 

Back to licenses. Generally speaking, they cover the following costs:

  • Sensor onboarding, network services and software maintenance.
  • Blockchain transaction fees. Each sensor generates tens or hundreds of thousands of Algorand transactions per year.  
  • Third-party software licenses. In some cases, typically for Type 3 sensors, manufacturers charge us license fees for API data access needed by PlanetWatch.
  • Cost of internet connectivity. This currently applies to Type 1 sensors, as they include a SIM card with a prepaid data plan.

Licenses also enable PlanetWatch to easily prove the size of our community and use it to negotiate with third parties special discounts for PlanetWatchers. For example, you will soon see that our special price for Airqino sensors is way less than what some people anticipated. Also, in some cases, the order of purchase of licenses may determine your place on sensor waiting lists.

Finally, we plan to give sensor manufacturers the possibility to buy our licenses in bulk at discounted prices and resell them to PlanetWatchers. This will create a competitive market among them which could reduce the license purchase cost for individual PlanetWatchers.

PlanetWatch is scaling fast and we are doing our best to remove friction. Later this month we will unveil an important partnership which will very soon add hundreds of sensors to our network.

Stay safe, and watch the Planet!

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