Google’s Earth 6 Now Up For Download
I still remember the first time I discovered Google Earth and how much fun I had locating my current home on the map and taking a look at what’s around me. For those who aren’t fully familiar with Google Earth, it’s a virtual globe and map application that started out under the name of EarthViewer 3D. The app was made by Keyhole Inc. a company that Google acquired back in 2004. Google released what we now know as Google Earth in 2005. Since then a lot of improvements were added to the software. Android and iOS apps were released at a later date. Users can now enjoy scouting the world virtually on whichever device they feel is more convenient, a computer or a smartphone.
Recently the search engine giant has announced the release of Google Earth 6. The latest version can already be downloaded and will work on Windwos, Mac OS X and Linux. As the company mentions on its blog, the latest version of Google Earth is all about taking the virtual globe to the next level with a bunch of new features.
First off Google added a truly integrated Street View experience. When the software was first introduced, people were thrilled to skip from any location right to the roof of their house. But the thing is most people would love to get a view of the street and the lower part of the neighborhood as well. We can all agree that we’re not that fond of rooftops and seeing things from above (unless we’re in a hot air balloon taking a trip around the world). Street View elements were first added to Google Earth in 2008. Back then the application enabled “flying into Street View panoramas”. With this latest version of Google Earth, the Street View experience is fully integrated which means that people will be able to travel from outer space right to the front of their house.
Pegman (the little man indicating your Street View location) is now docked alongside the navigation controls in Google Earth 6 and you’ll get to pick him up and drop him whenever you want to take a virtual walk around a location. You can do that whenever you see a highlighted blue road on the ground. Once you get there you can look around with your navigation controls and mouse. You’ll also be able to move from one location to another by using the scroll wheel on your mouse or arrow keys on your keyboard. Assuming you want to go to a location that’s pretty far from what you’re visiting, then you can simply click the exit button and you’ll return to aerial view. From there you can choose your next destination.
Another feature that was added to Google Earth 6 is “3D Trees”. All you see in the software right now are buildings but the truth is we’re surrounded by trees as well and they’re pretty important for our planet and our overall well-being. Plus it’s a bit annoying to only see buildings everywhere you look. The latest version of Google Earth includes beautifully detailed 3D models for a large number of species of trees. Expect to see the Japanese Maple, the East African Cordia and many more. If you want to enjoy the trees you’ll have to make sure that you’ve turned on the 3D buildings layer in the app.
A high number of Google Earth 5 users admitted that the feature they liked best in the app was the availability of historical imagery. The feature will allow you to go back in time and discover what London looked like in 1945 for example.
Because it wasn’t always obvious that a historical image was available for a certain place, a lot of users didn’t know about this feature or simply didn’t use it to its maximum potential. In the new version of the software you’ll get to discover historical imagery easier than before. As soon as you reach a location where historical images are available you’ll get to see the date of the oldest image in the status bar, on the bottom of the screen. Clicking on that date will allow you to view images from that time period. You can then browse through all photos snapped throughout that period at that location.
You can’t exactly call all these features massive improvement but users will definitely get a better experience overall out of Google Earth 6. We’ve also included a video in the article which will allow you to check the new features out for yourself before you end up downloading the software. If you’re convinced you can proceed to Google Earth 6’s download link which can be found right here.11