Using a 3D framework superimposed with satellite imagery, high definition aerial photography and sophisticated GIS data, Google Earth takes map services to all-new levels. It provides more than just navigation when used through its desktop platform. Certain overlays offer unique views of the night sky and distant planets, as well as other features created to work in tandem with Google Earth's dynamic suite of tools.
- Smartphone, desktop and browser-based versions make this an incredibly accessible application
- Customized layers can be created by each user or shared with communities to showcase different locations or ways to use the application's features.
- Simulations, filters, and integration with third-party software among the many flexible capabilities the software offers.
- Industry-leading technology and capability for navigation and terrain study.
- Different layers include various pieces of media like photos and videos related to a location.
- Crowd-sourced information works with certain features like those related to traffic and commercial details.
- Images created with Google Earth's satellite data are considered copyrighted to Google Earth.
- Only allows non-commercial and personal use of images created with Google Earth.
- Certain features may only be available or compatible with browser-based or desktop versions.
The level of detail Google Earth achieves offers endless opportunities for gathering data, researching neighborhoods and exploring the world in rich detail that refreshes itself consistently. The company's massive focus on fine-tuning this powerful tool is evident in the evolution this software has taken from mapping terrain to fully simulating navigational features. The Street View feature shows the true scale of Google Earth's reality-inspired vision, a project that continues to refine its method of capturing photographic images of every corner of the world in order to maintain its massive database. Continued developments have also led to ocean views beneath the surface, as well as underwater data for America's Great Lakes. Mars, the moon and other celestial wonders have all been given the Google Earth treatment, as well, and provide a trove of scientific perspective on the planets and galaxies both near and far, far away. Features like these have led to such enthusiastic followings among fans of Google Earth that the company allows for a variety of ways to get involved with development. Because of the authority Google Earth holds as a digital mapping and geographic measuring tool, many organizations and academic institutions depend on its data for their work. Researchers with the University of Maryland have used its information in their reports and the Carnegie Institute for Sciences partnered with Google to build maps for gathering environmental data. Certain areas of the world and highly classified locations cannot be shown via any of Google Earth's layers, a move some may think is controversial or necessary depending on the need. Google Earth continues to develop its maps in accordance and agreement with other organizations and governing bodies to abide by laws and protections for each location.