By March 19, 2009

Google enable street view in the UK

photo Google Maps now allows users to navigate some UK city streets, using photographs taken at a street-level viewpoint. It has been rolling out its Street View service gradually in various countries, starting with the US, since May 2007. Camera-equipped cars began photographing British streets in the summer of 2008.

"Street View has been hugely popular with our users in Europe and worldwide, and we’re thrilled it’s now available in the UK for so many great cities, enabling users to see street-level panoramas of major city roads and look up and print out useful driving directions," Ed Parsons, Google UK’s geospatial technologist, said in a statement.

The full list of UK cities covered by the service includes: London, Edinburgh, Leeds, Bradford, Cambridge, Cardiff, Belfast, Birmingham, Manchester, Liverpool, Oxford, Sheffield, Nottingham, Derby, Bristol, Coventry, Glasgow, Aberdeen, Swansea, York, Newcastle, Dundee, Southampton, Norwich and Scunthorpe. The scope of Street View is limited in some cities, a spokesperson for Google said.

London’s mayor, Boris Johnson, said in the Google statement that Street View was "a hugely practical tool if you’re off to an area of the city you’ve never been to before or are on the hunt for a new home".

"London’s unique beauty, splendour and energy is truly illuminated in cyberspace with this superb new tool," Johnson said. "It is simply fascinating, even for a Londoner like me to whiz over Westminster Bridge past the Houses of Parliament, soak up the majesty of Regent’s Park, take in the stupendous views from Primrose Hill or simply wander around the streets near where I live."

Google’s commercial launch partners for Street View in the UK include and Fancyapint founder Gordon Butler said in the statement that imagery had always been a key factor in the online pub guide because it helps users find their destination, and Street View took this idea to a "whole new level".

Because Street View is a function within Google Maps, it can be embedded for free within businesses’ websites as part of the wider mapping application.

I have tested it on the iPhone and it works very well so far.

via ZDNet

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