Google first wowed the world with with Google Earth back in 2005, and have been busy adding new imagery ever since, while making the tool available on a host of platforms.
Google Earth is now supported on platforms like Mac, Linux, iPhone and Android, and as a way of belatedly celebrating Earth Day they’ve released Earth view in Google Maps, which lets you install a plug in and enjoy the 3D-tastic Google Earth experience in your browser.
“Earth view offers a true three-dimensional perspective, which lets you experience mountains in full detail, 3D buildings, and first-person dives beneath the ocean,” purred Product Manager Peter Birch wrote in a blog post. “The motion is fluid, and you can see the world from any viewpoint.”
Fabulous 3D views
Once you’ve installed the Plugin you’ll be able to get stuck into funky angled Earth views, 3D buildings, butter-smooth panning and zooming and an introductory showcase of fab places to fly off to, like the Taj Mahal, Tower of Pisa and Niagara Falls.
The standalone Google Earth application will continue to be supported, as will KML editing, historical imagery, GPS tracks, tour-creation, Mars, Sky, flight simulator etc, but the new web version makes it quicker to get stuck into some 3D right in your browser.
A fabulous time-waster too
It can be quite a compelling experience too – we’ve just spent the last five minutes ‘flying’ over the Thames, hovering over Cardiff castle and the Millennium Stadium before jetting off for a fly-past of Manhattan.