Google Street View for South Africa – Now Live
Update: Seems the Google SA folk aren’t waiting for the media release – STREET VIEW FOR SOUTH AFRICA is LIVE ALREADY – use maps.google.com and drag the Street View man icon from above the zoom slider onto the map. Any roads captured by the Google cameras will highlight. Drop the icon wherever you want to zoom down to street level for a look-see.
If you find anything excellent – yourself we include as excellent! – drop a link into the comments below!
Since the announcement in late 2009 that Google would be producing Street Views of the major South African cities there’s been a regular stream of sightings of the various Google Camera Prius’ around the country.
Google Street View is the integrated 360° panoramic view imagery taken at street level of prominent locations. It is integrated into both Google Earth and the online Google Maps services and first saw life in 2007 when the initial focus was on major US cities. Since then Street Views have become available for a large number of locations around the world.
Now, in time for the World Cup kickoff, it is South Africa’s turn. At the initial announcement Google said that it was taking photographs of locations in Johannesburg, Pretoria, Cape Town, Port Elizabeth and Durban. But sightings of the Google Camera cars have been made well outside of the city limits in many cases – I saw one on the freeway in the Benoni area, and am aware of cars having been spotted in Hermanus for example.
Google SA will be holding a media briefing to launch the new Street Views tomorrow (Tuesday, 08 June 2010) and it’s expected that the images will be live on Google Maps SA by lunchtime as well.
If you’ve never had any fun with Street Views in the past, and want to see what all the fuss is about before the SA launch tomorrow, have a look at these samples:
- London – Big Ben and The Houses of Parliament
- New York – Times Square
- Sydney – Opera House and Harbour Bridge
- Rome – The Colosseum
(It takes a few moments for the map to centre itself first, and then for the Street View images to load.)
The Street View images will add even more value to the Google SA Maps service, with Google Earth overlays already providing an impressive collection of 3D-building renders for some of the major cities.