Google had a nice little get together today where they talked about their mapping solutions, Google Maps, Google Earth, Navigation, Streetview etc. etc.
Google has been obsessed with maps for at least a decade now and they made the below video to tell you about their history:
So what is it that Google is envisioning for the future?
First of all there is StreetView wherever there wasn’t before. Google developed the StreetTrecker, a portable device to map out areas that can’t be reached by car, bike or bicycle.
It is about 20kg and it has batteries that will last all day.
Think about exploring every little aspect of the Grand Canyon simple within Google Earth. It can also be used to map your favourite shopping mall.
Take it offline
The next big thing is offline Google Maps, yes you have read correctly. I am most excited about this one as I am overseas at the moment and constantly trying to find my way around, but don’t want to use roaming data so i always have to find a free wifi connection, thank you Starbucks.
Offline Google Maps for Android are coming in the next few weeks. Users will be able to take maps offline from more than 100 countries.
The next dimension
Google has had 3D models in Google Earth since 2006 and today they announced that they will begin adding 3D model to entire metropolitan areas to mobile devices.
This is possible thanks to a combination of a new imagery rendering techniques and computer vision that lets Google automatically create 3D cityscapes, complete with buildings, terrain and even landscaping, from 45-degree aerial imagery.
By the end of the year the aim is to have 3D coverage for metropolitan areas with a combined population of 300 million people.
Pretty cool? that’s what I said.