Google updated a whole bunch of their Android apps this afternoon, including Google Earth. Quietly included in that update is the new 3D imagery that they unveiled a few weeks ago.
As we already knew, it’s a limited number of cities that have this feature at the start. That said, it’s a fairly impressive list of cities: Boulder, Boston, Charlotte, Lawrence, Los Angeles, Long Beach, Portland, San Antonio, San Diego, San Francisco, Santa Cruz and Tampa in the United States, along with Rome, Italy.
The imagery is very impressive from the air, though fairly rough from ground level. I expect that quality to improve greatly over time. If you’re not seeing the 3D imagery, be sure that the “3D buildings” layer is enabled.
In addition, they’ve included a new Tour Guide feature to help guide you around to popular destinations in various cities. You’ll see a strip of images at the bottom of the screen in Google Earth that you can click and play.
This update is available right now from Google Play, and will be available for iOS devices soon. Still no word on when this 3D imagery will arrive on desktop versions of Google Earth, but we’ll be sure to let you know when we find out.
Here is a quick video to show you more about the new features in Google Earth for Android:
(via Google Lat Long Blog)
About Mickey Mellen
Mickey has been using Google Earth since it was released in 2005, and has created a variety of geo-related sites including Google Earth Hacks. He runs a web design firm in Marietta, GA, where he lives with his wife and two kids.
I’m not viewing any 3d imagery on my Lenovo Idea pad tablet. I tried with my smartphone and still didn’t view 3d imagery. What’s wrong?
There’s no 3D-Buildings Layer in the Layer Menu of my Nexus S…
okay, just for dual-core… sry, did not read the description in the playstore carefully…
Runs very well on my HTC EVO 3D. Looks nice from “high” altitude. But if you zoom closer to the Street and building, there looking not very nice then. I will miss the old building layer.
I cant find the 3D buildings layer on my Galaxy S1. Is it only for Gingerbread and up?
Nice for those with the right devices in the dozen or so places covered … but will the imagery resolution for the small screens of most mobile devices be upgraded for desktops when it arrives?
This new version creates distortions in the base aerial imagery when used with a kmz file . Is there any way to revert back to version 6.2 from this new 7? Running it on my asus eee pad transformer prime with android 4.0 ICS
Will this new implementation mean Google will maintain two building layers? The autogenerated one for enabled Terrain and the legacy building layer for disabled Terrain?
How will the Trimble deal factor into this?
The new version 7 for Earth mobile is another great improvements on mobile Earth. It’s very fast on a Galaxy Note.
Samsung Android user says
I have a new Samsung Galaxy Note II with Google’s 4.1.1 Android operating system. I have Google maps, complete with satellite imagery and directions to/from etc. I wanted to add some “My places” locations, but couldn’t. I tried to install the full version of GE, but website said it was incompatible with my phone/current location (Thailand). What’the glitsch?