Thursday, 19 March 2009

Google Street View hits the UK

Right, so everyone today is talking about Google Street View finally coming to the UK, and quite rightly so, its funking awesome, and everyone loves the challenge of working out when the pictures were taken, along with other evolving past times such as looking at your house, friend's house, celebrates houses (maybe not the later one, but you get the idea).

Anyway Google Street View is now live in 25 cities across the UK including London, Belfast, Cardiff, Manchester, Edinburgh... and Norwich, nearly two years after it first launched in the US in May 2007. You can view it by simply going onto Google Maps, and selecting the little man icon in the top left of the map screen.

Interestingly according to Brand Republic there has also been partnerships by Visit Britain,, The London Mayor and Tate set up with Google and have selected a gallery of Street View images that showcase UK tourist attractions. The first of a whole host of opportunities I'm sure we will see as Street View rolls out further.

I also wanted to mention a brilliant piece of Street View art, set up on May 3rd 2008, by artists Robin Hewlett and Ben Kinsley. They invited the Google Street View team as well as residents of Pittsburgh’s Northside, and put together a series of pictures including a seventeenth century sword fight, a heroic rescue scene, marching band, and huge rubber chicken.

It would be interesting to see whether there will be similar stunts, or even brand involvement integrated somehow into the UK Street View mapping process.

An earlier mention of this came from Rick Lamb, along with this post from Nick Burcher using Google Streetview to re-create album covers.