You may have seen announcements about Esri’s new ArcGIS Platform launch. We wanted to provide some guidance on what this product is, how it could be accessed, and how it could be applicable to Educators.
What is ArcGIS Platform?
ArcGIS Platform is a location analytics Platform as a Service (PaaS) offering for developers who would like to incorporate location-based services (basemaps, geocoding, routing, visualization, etc.) in apps, products and business systems they build. It is a way for developers to leverage standalone services in a frictionless and easy to use way.
It provides access to location-based services in your API of choice, including open source mapping libraries such as Leaflet, Open Layers, and GL JS, as well as Esri’s web and native APIs.
ArcGIS Platform has a consumption-based business model, meaning costs are related directly to services consumed. ArcGIS Online has a subscription-based model, meaning access is provided for a specific time period; ArcGIS Online also provides additional capabilities and end-user applications to create, share, edit, and analyze maps and data.
ArcGIS Platform is primarily meant for developers who do not currently have Esri technology; it is an alternative to accessing location-based services through an ArcGIS Online subscription.
How can the ArcGIS Platform be accessed by Educators?
ArcGIS Platform is accessed via ArcGIS Developer Subscription.
Bottom Line: Whether you are a researcher wishing to incorporate location-based services in your work, whether you are faculty teaching programming concepts (please continue to enhance development skills in Python, Web APIs and SDKs!), or whether you are a student working on class projects to develop applications incorporating location-based services, you already have access to the services and capabilities of ArcGIS Platform via the Education Institution Agreement (former Site License).
Therefore, please continue to leverage ArcGIS Online and the ArcGIS Developer Subscription available with your Education agreements. ArcGIS Platform is simply a different way for customers new to Esri technology to acquire and pay for the consumption of those location-based services.
If your institution does not already have ArcGIS, please reach out to us to help with the best option for your needs – firstname.lastname@example.org