It seems like forever ago. In early June, Google held an event to show off its 3D mapping technology that would be making its way into the Google Earth for Android and iOS applications. The event was largely believed to be in response to Apple’s imminent move to develop a 3D maps program of their own, which would replace Google Maps in iOS 6.
In order to accomplish the 3D imaging feat, Google sent airplanes out over key areas in the United States, which took images from multiple angles to compile an incredibly accurate and realistic 3D map of various American cities. On my Android devices, the 3D imaging feature and ability to explore various cities as they really are is a welcomed addition, and if nothing else is a fun way to kill some time exploring places you’d like to one day go. The current 3D cities list is as follows, directly from the mouth of the Goog:
“The growing list of 3D cities include Boulder, Boston, Charlotte, Lawrence (Kan.), Long Beach (Ca.), Los Angeles, Portland (Ore.), San Diego, Santa Cruz, Tampa, Tucson, and the San Francisco Bay Area (including the Peninsula and East Bay) as well as Rome, Italy.” - Google Lat Long Blog
During the event, Google also introduced Tour Guide, which allows you to search for a popular attraction, and immediately go to that location complete with nuggets of trivia sure to earn you some brownie points the next time you pick up Trivial Pursuit.
Both features made their way into Google Earth for Android several weeks ago, and today iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch users are able to get in on the fun as well. Google has announced the imminent release of the Google Earth update for iOS devices, which will bring 3D mapping to the iPad 2, new iPad, and iPhone 4S devices, and Tour Guide functionality for all iOS users on version 4.2 and above. If you’re interested in checking out the latest Google Earth has to offer, we suggest heading over to the App Store and giving it a download.