Friday, January 22, 2010

Getting a better view in Sacramento, Portland and Oakland

Back in December we introduced new high-resolution aerial imagery to the Google Maps API for 2 US cities - San Jose and San Diego, CA. When we went public we promised you more locations so today we're excited to announce the addition of 3 more US cities: Portland, OR, Sacramento and Oakland, CA are now available!

When we first launched we were thrilled with how our Maps API partners implemented this imagery. Orbitz made travel booking even easier by showing many views of a hotel, while Redfin and Trulia added a new dimension to the online house hunting experience.

Orbitz is now displaying this imagery for their Sacramento hotels. To see the aerial view, click on the map link within any hotel and zoom in from 'satellite' view:

Redfin is showing an "Angled" view of their properties in Oakland. Select North, South, East, West links from the map view:

Trulia is presenting a "Perspective" view for properties in Sacramento. Toggle to the "Perspective" view from the map for each listing.

Portland is featured in this demo which auto-rotates to one of its cardinal directions (North, South, East, West) every 3 seconds.

The existing G_SATELLITE_MAP and G_HYBRID_MAP map types support aerial imagery at high zoom levels (where available) provided that you explicitly enable this functionality. If you zoom into a location for which such imagery exists, these map types will automatically alter their views. To learn how to enable aerial perspective imagery be sure to take a look at the concepts, reference and examples of the JS Google Maps API documentation.

For some more fun, the Google Maps Mania Blog showcases some mashups that utilize imagery from San Diego and San Jose:

As our total number of cities with this aerial imagery has now reached 5, we invite you to keep a close eye on our coverage doc. It will be continually updated to reflect new cities as we add them in the coming months.