Take a closer look at Ireland with Windows Live Maps

9 May 2008

Microsoft’s competitor product to Google Maps has upped the ante by offering Irish users the chance to get a bird’s eye view of several towns and cities around the country with the click of a mouse.

Windows Live Maps, like Google Maps, lets you find places, plot directions and even label your own map for future reference. Now it also gives the user a 45-degree view of seven cities and major towns: Dublin, Cork, Carlow, Galway, Limerick, Navan and Wexford.

Like Google Maps, Live Maps combines both mapping and aerial views but the bird’s eye view offers considerably more detail. When comparing views of my city centre apartment complex in both Google and Live Maps, I was able to pick out my living room window in Live Maps but not even the apartment itself in Google Maps, so the bird’s eye view is definitely an improvement on previous aerial mapping quality.

Other features include Custom Collections: a listing of places to eat, museums and other sites of interest to the general public.

A word of warning, zooming around Dublin city in bird’s eye mode can bring out your voyeuristic nature in the sense that you can peek into your neighbour’s back garden and it also lets you see into those building sites that are boarded up.

However, the aerial photography appears to have been taken last year – the siliconrepublic.com editor was able to spot his car (pictured) parked around the back of his old apartment!

By Marie Boran