Overview Map

I just discovered that the release of Google Earth that came out earlier this month included a new feature called “Overview Map”. Turn it on by going to the “View” menu as shown to the right and select “Overview Map”.
This is actually a very nice tool which shows a minature overview of the earth map in the upper right corner of the 3D view. A red rectangle highlights your currently zoomed in view. If you point your mouse at another location on the overview map and double click your left mouse button you will be flown quickly over to this new location (and end up at the same altitude as your last position).
The overview map helps you keep perspective where on the Earth you are looking at, and is a fast way to go to another part of the world you want to see. You can turn this overview map on and off by keyboard shortcut: Control-M. You can also adjust the size of the Overview Map by going to the GE Options (under “Tools->Options” on Windows, or “Preferences” on the Mac). Here you can also change the “Zoom Relation” which means how close the Overview Map matches the zoom level of your current view (default is infinity).

About Frank Taylor

Frank Taylor started the Google Earth Blog in July, 2005 shortly after Google Earth was first released. He has worked with 3D computer graphics and VR for many years and was very impressed with this exciting product. Frank completed a 5.5 year circumnavigation of the earth by sailboat in June 2015 which you can read about at Tahina Expedition, and is a licensed pilot, backpacker, diver, and photographer.


  1. Hi
    Overview map is an excellent feature, please if you could send me e-mail on how to save the overview map in high custom resolution as an image, since I need the captured image map as a texture to be used in 3D apps such as maya 7.0, it would very nice from you to lead me how to do that, I hope I can hear from you as soon as possible, thank you in advance , Ammer…. graphic desighner.

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