It’s been a little while since the last update, but it appears that Google Earth has pushed out some fresh imagery! Thanks to GEB reader ‘Andreas’ for letting us know about it.
Due to the new imagery, it’s more difficult to spot fresh imagery. Also, in the time since we first spotted this new imagery it’s also arrived in Google Maps, which makes it even more difficult to determine what is new and what is old. Despite that, we’ve found quite a few areas that have been updated and here is the list so far:
- Italy: Catania — thanks ‘Munden’
- Malta: Valetta — thanks ‘Munden’
- New Zealand: Otorohanga — thanks ‘Munden’
- Poland: Gdansk, Gdynia, Hel, Poznan, Warsaw — thanks ‘Munden’
- Serbia: Belgrade — thanks ‘Munden’
- Russia: Arkhangelsk, Monino, Murmansk — thanks ‘Munden’
- Slovenia: Ljubljana — thanks ‘Munden’
- Ukraine: Kurpaty — thanks ‘Munden’
- United States: California (Beales AFB, Linda, Palmdale, Rosamond, Yuba City), Florida (Apalachicola, Daytona Beach, Gainesville, Jacksonville, Kissimmee, Panama City, Pensacola), Georgia (Valdosta), Illinois (Findlay, Galesburg, Neoga, Taylorville), Louisiana (New Orleans), Mississippi (Jacksonville), South Carolina (Charleston, Hartsville, Lancaster), Texas (Beaumont, Corpus Christi, Freeport, Galveston, Texas City), Utah (Halchita, Mexican Hat, Zion National Park) — thanks ‘Andreas’ and ‘Munden’
Along with the ski resorts , Google has now pushed out new Street View imagery across Belgium.
The coverage in Belgium is remarkably comprehensive, with virtually every road now viewable in Street View. To see it for yourself, just search for “Belgium” in Google Earth, then drag the peg man on to the map.
Despite the previous imagery update occurring just a week ago, it appears that Google has pushed out a bit more new imagery. GEB reader ‘Andreas’ noticed some fresh imagery in a few places around the globe, but it’s been difficult to determine if it’s new to Google Earth or not. Most of the imagery is from about six months ago and it’s already in Google Maps, but none of it shows up in recent update files.
Because the new imagery is already in Google Maps, it’s a bit more work to determine which areas are new. To figure out if a particular area is new, you can:
1: Look at the date in Google Earth for the imagery you think might be fresh.
2: Check the updates between then and now in the the update KML to see if it was released in a previous update. If it wasn’t, then it’s new!
[UPDATED -- 10-November, 1:16pm EST]
- France: Bourgoin-Jallieu, Libourne
- Germany: Waldkraiburg/Landshut
- Italy: Altamura
Google has just introduced a test mode on Google Maps that enables WebGL to help draw the maps, and the results have moved it a step closer to Google Earth. If you’re using a WebGL-enabled browser, such as a recent version of Google Chrome or the new Firefox beta, you’ll see a note in the lower left corner of Google Maps inviting you to try it out.
The result is a much smoother experience; lots of animations to ease the transitions when zooming in, rotating 45 degree imagery, or switching into Street View. It also enables the transparent 3D buildings like you’ll see in the Android version of Google Maps.
All in all, it feels very similar to the Android version of Maps, with a few exceptions:
1 — You can’t angle your view or rotate the map, with the exception of the 45 degree imagery. On Android, you can angle and rotate freely on the street maps.
2 — The new transparent 3D buildings in Google Maps now cast shadows, which is a nice effect not seen in the Android version. Even better, as +Nick Altmann pointed out, the shadows are time-of-day (and likely day-of-year) accurate! Very cool. Here’s a screenshot of Los Angeles, taken around 3:45pm local time:
It’s certainly no where near the depth of Google Earth (or the Google Earth Plug-in, also available inside of Google Maps), but it’s another step in that direction. It’s possible that the products could one day merge, but it seems that we’re still quite a distance from that.
Thanks to sharp-eyed GEB reader ‘Donovan’, it appears that Google has just released thousands of 3D trees in Portland, Oregon (and possibly some other cities).
When Google Earth 6 was released, they included 3D trees in San Francisco, Chicago, New York, Athens, Tokyo and Berlin. In March they added trees to London in preparation for the royal wedding. In June, they added trees to Philadelphia, Boston, London and a few other cities in the California Bay Area. They followed that up in September with trees in Boulder, Denver and Los Angeles. Now we have Portland.
The tree releases have been fairly spread out, but this update comes barely a month after the previous release, so hopefully they’ll be rolling these updates out at a more rapid pace.
Google hasn’t officially announced this release, so there could be additional cities in there as well.