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Google Plans for 3D Cities, Trekker View & Offline Maps for Android

Luc Vincent engineering director taking the Street View Trekker for a trial run in TahoeWhile Google’s Street View service is undoubtedly useful and one most people online have used, enjoyed and benefitted from, for the firm itself it has caused many headaches, as it has faced numerous lawsuits and privacy scandals over its Wi-Fi sniffing capabilities.

However, this has done little to deter the firm after it unveiled a series of new plans to further increase the scope and coverage of its mapping tools, including flying planes over cities to create entire 3D maps of the buildings below.

“By the end of the year we aim to have 3D coverage for metropolitan areas with a combined population of 300 million people,” it said in a blog post.

You have been warned.

As if photographing our homes and then taking to the skies wasn’t enough, though, Google also announced a portable version of its photography equipment that can be worn when walking or skiing so no terrain to remote or arduous is off-limits – perhaps inspired by the April Fool’s Google Street Roo?

“There’s a whole wilderness out there that is only accessible by foot. Trekker solves that problem [why is that a problem?] by enabling us to photograph beautiful places such as the Grand Canyon so anyone can explore them,” it added.

In some more worthwhile news, the firm also said that it will make its Map tool available to download to Android devices so users can access information offline.

“Users will be able to take maps offline from more than 100 countries. This means that the next time you are on the subway, or don’t have a data connection, you can still use our maps,” it explained.

This could be particularly useful if you’re trekking through a remote location with one of Google’s cameras mounted on your back, perhaps.

This post originally appeared on V3.

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