Google Street View comes indoors

Google Street View Car in Tokyo

Google Street View Car in Tokyo. Photo: Kawasaki ichiro.

Internet giant Google has begun a pilot program, allowing users of its “Maps” service to look inside businesses. This tool is aimed to further the controversial Street View feature which already allows the public to access 360° images of streets.

A spokesman for Google described the new feature: “Building on the Google Art Project, which took Street View technology inside 17 acclaimed museums, this project is another creative implementation of Street View technology, to help businesses as they build their online presence.” He also told of how the company hoped the service would “Enable businesses to highlight the qualities that make their locations stand out through professional, high-quality imagery.”

Combating previous complaints about privacy, this service will be rolled out on an entirely voluntary basis, with businesses allowed to post their own photographs. Businesses will also be instructed to warn customers that they will be photographed.

Google will roll out this initiative across the world with initially-selected locations including London and Paris as well as a number of other cities in Japan and Australia.


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