Google takes Street View to Antarctica

1 Oct 2010

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Penguins in Antarctica, it seems, had Street View just as it arrived Ireland – not that we’re complaining. Google revealed last night that Street View imagery is now on all seven continents and Google cameras have even captured several penguin colonies.

Google yesterday launched Street View in Ireland. The application gives users a panoramic view of a location from street level on Google Maps by dropping Google mascot Pegman over a given area.

But now it seems that as well as Ireland, the frozen wastes of Antarctica and the beaches of Brazil are also captured by the Google Street View teams’ cameras.

To clarify, Google’s VP of engineering in charge of Google Earth and Maps Brian McClendon said that many of the blue dots users see on the maps of Antarctica are in fact user-generated.

“We introduced Street View back in May 2007, enabling people to explore street-level imagery in five US cities. We were excited to share a virtual reflection of the real world to enable armchair exploration. Since then, we’ve expanded our 360-degree panoramic views to many more places, allowing you to check out a restaurant before dining there, to explore a neighbourhood before moving there and to find landmarks along the route of your driving directions.

“Three years later, we’re happy to announce that you can now explore Street View imagery on all seven continents, with the addition today of Brazil, Ireland and Antarctica. You can now see images from around the world spanning from the beaches of Brazil, to the moors of Ireland, to the icy terrain in Antarctica.

“We often consider Street View to be the last zoom layer on the map, and a way to show you what a place looks like as if you were there in person — whether you’re checking out a coffee shop across town or planning a vacation across the globe. We hope this new imagery will help people in Ireland, Brazil, and even the penguins of Antarctica, to navigate nearby, as well as enable people around the world to learn more about these areas,” McClendon said.

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Editor John Kennedy is an award-winning technology journalist.

editorial@siliconrepublic.com