Google expands Street View imagery

London : Google has now taken tourism to the next level by allowing people worldwide to watch from the comfort of their home monuments like Stonehenge, the streets of Italy’s Pompeii, and the remote landscapes of Antarctica.

But instead of the usual Google Streetview cars which have become a familiar site on British streets, new snaps were taken using a special Google tricycle.

The Street View trike, as it is known, was sent around the world to photograph some of the hardest to reach places on the planet.

The trike carries a mounted Street View camera, and a specially decorated unit with imaging & GPS technology, the Daily Mail reported.

Google’s Brian McClendon, head of engineering, Google Earth and Maps, introduced the new feature by saying how thrilled he was that all seven continents could now be accessed using the technology. He took the pictures of the penguins in the Antarctic.

“We introduced Street View back in May 2007, enabling people to explore street-level imagery in five US cities. We were excited to share a virtual reflection of the real world to enable armchair exploration,” he added.

“Since then, we’ve expanded our 360-degree panoramic views to many more places, allowing you to check out a restaurant before dining there, to explore a neighbourhood before moving there and to find landmarks along the route of your driving directions,” McClendon said.

Many of the images have not yet been added to the Google Streetview programme – but will appear in the near future.

McClendon said: “Three years later, we’re happy to announce that you can now explore Street View imagery on all seven continents, with the addition today of Brazil, Ireland and Antarctica.”

“You can now see images from around the world spanning from the beaches of Brazil, to the moors of Ireland, to the icy terrain in Antarctica,” he added.

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