Google Street View UPdates
ANNOUNCEMENT: We're so excited to announce that we're now offering Google Street View imagery for select businesses!
While Google Street View’s inception started way back in 2001 as a research project, it’s official launch wouldn’t be until May 25, 2007. Featuring 360° panoramic imagery along much of the world’s highways, streets and roads, Street View has since become the #1 mapping and navigation platform in the world!
HOW WE GOT HERE: July 11, 2018, Joe Danzer of Joseph Danzer Photography (one of Google’s top 10 Trusted Photographers in America) becomes a beta tester for one of the country’s first Google-certified Street View cameras. This camera would enable us to create imagery that a business could use for marketing, data updating and collection (like streets and street names, etc) visual inspection (road damage) and more. In many instances, it's a differentiater for a business trying to engage with it's customers and prospects. After months of testing, tweaking and communication with the manufacturer, the image below is the result of Cincinnati’s first Street View image taken outside of Google’s own fleet.
One month later, with lots of enthusiasm about the idea that on-demand Street View would be a huge benefit for businesses, governments, etc., we doubled down with a second camera and were ready for deployment. Things are never that smooth and neither would this be.
While we had hoped that the incorporation of this equipment into our service offerings would be quicker, what we found was that a tremendous amount of time, money and energy had to be channeled into working out the kinks. Not only did the equipment need to be fine-tuned, but deconstructing Google’s method of capturing image data was suddenly at the forefront. It wasn’t enough to stick a 360° camera on the roof of the car and start driving. Because of the way Street View talks with Google Earth and other platforms in its ecosystem, everything from the positioning, height, movement, yaw, sway, mounting, dampening, lighting and more had to be accounted for ans standardized. Even though we were able to get a beautiful first image in August (beginners luck), it was clear that this was going to be a much longer and involved process than expected and the Cincinnati winter months were coming.
Suffice to say that the months between August and February we slow-going for testing. Fast forward to March of 2019. We now have 2 of 4 Google Street View cameras in the United States and are one of three companies in the country certified to product Street View imagery to upload to Google Maps!
MOVING FORWARD: While the intent is to be able to update the Street View image for any business, there are still policies and limitations. The most ideal businesses, initially, will be those that Google's vehicle fleet proper may not drive or hasn't driven in a long time. These include but aren't limited to:
Residential and commercial real estate developers (like Ryan Homes, Duke Realty, Miller-Valentine, etc.)
Apartment and property management companies (like Towne Properties, CMC Properties, Hills Developers, etc.)
Car lots (helpful for dealerships with large lots)
Shopping plazas (like the Green in Dayton, OH or Liberty Center in West Chester, OH)
Local, state and federal governments (for visual inspection of roads, new roads and communities, etc.)
Here is a Google Earth image of a beautiful golf community that lacks any Street View imagery around it’s roads. The blue highlighted streets are where Street View imagery exists. No blue? No image.
Cemeteries suffer from the same issue.
Many apartment complexes don’t have Street View.
No Street View for residential development communities.
What about LOCAL, STATE AND FEDERAL GOVERNMENTS? - When new roads, new communities, new industrial parks, etc are developed, local, state and federal governments spend time and money going out periodically to ensure that the roadways are safe, buildings are in shape, telephone poles are standing, etc. This is a good thing for the upkeep and betterment of our structures, roadways, bridges and more but it can be very expensive in man-hours to collect all that data. Working with local, state and federal governments, we can drive the miles and capture the imagery needed to assist in this critical effort. And in most (if not all) situations for a fraction of the cost.
Of course, the applications are many and we've presented just a few samples to demonstrate some of the more creative use cases. We're excited to see what the future holds with this technology and service and certainly encourage you to ask us questions.
If you're a business, government, association or entity that may have a need for updated Google Street View, please reach out to us to chat. We'd love to learn about your specific situation and explore how Google Street View can be applied.
FOR MORE INFORMATION AND PRICING FOR UPDATED GOOGLE STREET VIEW CONTACT US BELOW:
Google Maps is the largest and most used mapping and navigation platform in the world. With so many using it every day, it only makes sense for a business to leverage as much of it as possible. We’d love to partner with you to make that a reality!