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Friday, October 26, 2012

Terrain & Vegetation on Google Maps

We just launched terrain and vegetation data directly on the Google Maps basemap! Now you can see forests, deserts, mountains, and more without having to switch to Terrain mode :-)

"Though these changes sound small, they add up to a noticeably different (and improved) experience for users... Best of all, the added data is visible in the default Maps view — what Google refers to as basemap — meaning you won't need to dig into settings or layers to enable the visual flair." -- Chris Welch, The Verge

"If you hadn't checked beyond the base maps in the past few years, though, you'd have thought the terrain was charted in the "here be dragons" era -- it's been as flat as a board. Take a second look today. Google has overhauled Google Maps worldwide to show hills, deserts and lush zones by default, as well as label the geographical features that hadn't previously been identifiable in a sea of white." -- Jon Fingas, Engadget

"The Google Maps basemap is getting a visual overhaul today. Unlike most updates, though, this one is for the actual maps and not just the interface." -- Frederic Lardinois, TechCrunch

"...the basemap now looks more interesting. The slight shading for textures and the green of forests break up what was previously just vast expanses of white." -- Scott Gilbertson, WIRED

"Google freshened up the imagery inside Maps today, adding new visual information to convey terrain, vegetation, and natural land formations ... the moves show the Google Maps team taking every chance to extend its lead over competitors like Apple." -- Casey Newton, CNET

"Apple might be able to fix some of the many issues that plague its fledgling service, but it’s going to struggle to ever catch up if Google continues to advance its mapping tool at the rate it has been recently." -- Wayne Williams, betanews

"These huge updates to Google Maps could not come at a better time, with Apple and its mapping services coming under fire for lack of detail. Google already had one of the most comprehensive mapping services on the Internet, and this just goes one step further in bringing that experience to another level." -- Dave LeClair, MakeUseOf

Read more on the Google Lat Long blog...

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