From the desk of Marco Rocchetto
Founder of Telescope Live
London, 12 October 2020
Today we continue our slow discovery of what Telescope Live 2.0 is going to look like.
But first, let me put things in context before we see the new subscription plans for Telescope Live 2.0.
As you know, with the current version of Telescope Live, you can buy credits at any time without the need to enter in any kind of subscription plan.
On the other side, if you subscribe to a plan, you have different discounts on the credits based on the plan you choose (plus some complimentary credits for each month you stay within a subscription plan).
With Telescope Live 2.0 this is going to drastically change.
In fact, there will be no possibility at all to use one of our telescopes if you are not on one of the subscription plans.
One of the reasons why we took this decision is because our users are – luckily for us – growing in numbers.
But this means that we have a lot of requests coming from novices or people that wanted to try our service for the first time that are keeping our telescopes very – and I mean VERY – busy.
The other main reason that led us to this choice is that we wanted to change how people approached remote imaging and astrophotography in general.
In the last few weeks, I’ve gone into great detail about the revolution that we are going through.
We are changing almost every aspect of our platform and we are doing so in order to let Telescope Live be the New Home For Astrophotography.
Of course, this process took time, energy and resources; resources that were all focused in order to give you more freedom of choice.
But we will do it in a sort of counter intuitive way.
In Telescope Live 2.0, we will tackle this necessity of changing and all the issues we have experienced with our “old” platform with the introduction of the two new observing modalities I’ve previously told you about (the “One-Click Observations” and the “Pro Datasets”).
This way, the beginners will have the chance to try our services with some functions that will not “clog” the observation queue, leaving more observation time to the expert observers.
“Marco, this really sounds like discrimination to me!”
Hold your horse my friend!
I know that this decision might look discriminatory but it really isn’t.
In fact, it derives from the need to “prescribe” the best service to the right audience.
Follow me in this short reasoning.
If you are starting now with remote observation, is it really necessary to complicate your life with setting up an observation that maybe (just maybe) you won’t be able to exploit at 100% of its real potential?
I seriously doubt it…
Probably you should start this new journey from the basics, using the “One-Click Observations” and, if you are also getting started with post-processing, you can also use the “Pro Datasets”.
I don’t know if you remember, but in a previous email I told you about the learning aspect of Telescope Live 2.0 and, if you think about it, this decision is perfectly consistent with our learning program.
Indeed, we want to deliver the best service to the right people and we also want to give you the opportunity to grow your knowledge about space while observing it.
But this doesn’t necessarily mean that you are not ready for the “Advanced Requests”.
That said, you must know that, if you want to take control of one of our telescopes, you will still be able to do it.
The only new thing will be that you must be subscribed to a specific plan (either the Silver or the Gold plan – more about this topic in a minute).
Don’t you worry, as you will see in a second, these plans are not prohibitive in terms of cost.
On the contrary in fact!
Our subscriptions are in place to better diversify our new platform offerings to you, based on what aspect of the platform you would like to use.
But let’s see in practical terms all the differences between the various plans with a careful examination of each one, starting with the lowest – both in terms of cost and functionalities:
The Bronze Plan.
With the Bronze plan you will basically:
- Be able to submit one “One-Click Observation” at a time.
If you don’t remember/know what a “One-Click Observation” is, you can read it here but to make it easier for you, let me briefly sum it up. It works like this:
- You choose from a list of specially selected objects to observe,
- you send us your request
- and we will observe it for you.
- Some hours/days later (depending from the observation’s conditions and from the object chosen), once we have gathered the data, we will send you a full coloured picture ready to be shared, along with the raw data should you wish to process it yourself
- and then you will have the possibility to request another “One-Click Observation”.
- Moreover, you will have access to the standard video tutorials produced by our world-renowned astrophotographers (that we are going to publish constantly) that will let you improve both your observation and post-processing skills.
- Finally, you will have access to the community and to all the learning resources.
As you might have understood, this subscription plan addresses all the novices and the people who are curious about learning about space.
The cost? A mere $4 per month!
The Silver Plan.
Here things are starting to get interesting…
- With the Silver plan you can have five “One-Click Observations” at a time.
Instead of just 1 (as in the Bronze plan) you will be able to submit 5 different requests at any given time; each time we return to you a completed “One-Click Observation”, you will have a new one to use (and so on up to the limit of 5 active requests at the same time).
But this isn’t the real cool thing about the Silver plan… In fact,
- You will have access to the standard “Pro Datasets”.
Once again, if you don’t remember/know what are these, you can read it here but to make it easier for you, let me briefly sum it up. It works like this:
- You can choose the “Pro Dataset” you want
- and you will immediately download the raw data of your chosen observation that would have been carefully chosen by our team of experts, without having to wait for an observation to complete or for clear skies.
Of course, this new observation modality was carefully studied for those who want high quality data and want to immediately start to work on post-processing.
The other very cool thing is that, with many “Pro Datasets”, you will also get specific video tutorials that will boost your post-processing skills.
This will be the best value for money service you can imagine since you will get the same images taken with our professional top quality telescopes included in your subscription plan!
But wait, there is more!
- In fact, you will have access to all the premium video tutorials we are going to publish.
The premium video tutorials will be much more detailed and advanced videos than the standard ones (included with the Bronze plan) and they will enormously increase your processing abilities.
- Moreover, with the Silver plan, you will have the chance to buy credits and to submit “Advanced Requests”.
With this plan you will be able to take control of our telescopes, setting up all the technical aspects of your observations and deciding where to point them.
- As with the Bronze plan, you will have access to the community and to all the learning resources.
The cost for this incredible offer is a shocking $19 per month!
But now it’s time to get serious, so let’s see the last and most complete plan we have created for you.
The Gold Plan.
Here you will get all the features included in the Silver plan, such as:
- Access to all the premium video tutorials we are going to publish.
- Access to the community and to all the learning resources.
- The possibility to buy credits and to submit the “Advanced Requests”.
But, obviously, we have included a lot of more stuff, such as:
- Unlimited “One-Click Observations”.
With the Gold plan, you will have the possibility to simultaneously request all the “One-Click Observations you can dream of.
- Access to the premium “Pro Datasets”.
The premium “Pro Datasets” are going to be much more sophisticated (and therefore expensive) raw data than the standard ones included in the Silver plan.
Expensive for us, not for you!
In fact, you will get raw data that will take hours of observation from our telescopes and they will be included with your subscription.
This means that you will get data that, to observe right now creating the observing request yourself, will easily cost you more than 250 credits.
- Get 20% of discount on the observation through the “advanced requests”.
This means that, if you set up an observation with the Silver plan it is going to cost you 100 credits, instead it will cost you only 80 credits.
- Finally – and this is very cool – you will be assigned to a personal tutor with whom you will have a one-to-one 30 minutes call each month.
Having a dedicated tutor will support you even more in your learning process.
He will be your personal guide, helping out in case you need any kind of assistance in post processing or in observing with the Advanced Requests.
Imagine you have a specific topic about post-processing or an observation issue that you want to explore in more details…
Now you can ask your questions directly to one of our tutors in a one-to-one call that will guide you through the whole process.
This thing alone is worth the cost of the monthly subscription.
I know that you are now probably asking yourself something like:
“Wow! That’s a ton of amazing stuff you are offering with the Gold plan…
It must cost a fortune!”
Well, you are wrong…
The Gold plan will only cost $49 per month!
I know, it’s insane… especially when you do the maths.
When you download just one premium “Pro Dataset” (that, if you create the same observation with the “Advanced requests”, can cost more than 250 credits) you are basically covering the cost of 5 months of a Gold plan subscription…
…And that with just one download of a single premium “Pro Dataset”!
Well, this is all I have to tell you about the new plans that are going to be implemented with Telescope Live 2.0.
Of course you will be able to cancel your subscription plan at any time you want (even though I seriously doubt that you will be able to find elsewhere this kind of liberty and magnitude of services offered for observing the night skies).
Before we say goodbye, let me sum it up for you with an easy to understand comparative chart:
As always, if you have any questions on the topic we have treated today, you can drop me an email and I will be more than glad to answer any of your doubts.
In my next email (and last one before the launch), I will tell you what will happen to our existing customers and to those of you who still have a good amount of credits to spend.
The only thing you have to know now is that I have quite a good surprise for you guys…
See you Space Cowboy…
Founder of Telescope Live