Google has announced numerous new features for Google Maps and Earth. 3D on Android and iOS platforms and an offline mode under Android and Street View which can be used anywhere is on the table.
As planned, at a press conference, Google has revealed a new dimension for Google Maps and Earth. This is hardly surprising as this new 3D dimension is already present in Google Earth. But this 3D will be improved, making it more available in the future on Android and iOS platforms.
With the 3D demonstration done on the new iPad, it is easy to see that Google wanted to cut the grass from under Apple’s feet, as they were planning on presenting a Maps applications integrated into iOS 6 next week which provided a 3D view… while abandoning Google Maps.
For their 3D, Google uses an association of high definition aerial photographs and pictures taken at a 45° angle. The stereo-photogrammetry method is then used with an algorithm which automatically creates cities and landscapes in 3D. By the end of the year, Google is looking to have all of their urban zones covered with 3D views – totalling 300 million people.
The results are quite stunning as can be seen in this video below:
Still in the mobile field, but this time for Google Maps, and only on Android, there is some very good news with the arrival of an offline mode. Users can choose where they are going and parts of the map will be stored on their devices memory card so that it can be viewed without a mobile connection.
Google also talks of the very popular Street View function, which has caused them some privacy issues in the past. The specially designed cameras for taking these pictures has already been attached to cars, tricycles, snow mobile and even a chariot. It will now also be attached to Hikers.
All of the equipment will be placed in a backpack so that a person walking will be able to take Street View photos on foot. Hiking trips in national parks like the Grand Canyon are already planned.