New Bing Maps Application: Bing Maps World Tour + March, 2010 Imagery Releases

BingMapsWorldTour_0Where 2.0 action continues with the release of the Bing Maps World Tour application which gives you a release by release breakdown of all the imagery updates we’ve published dating back to August 2009. Some of you may recall the World Tour application which we’ve used to publish imagery updates in the past. In an effort to consolidate the experience into the most logical location, we’re moving it from it’s lonely Azure island into Bing Maps and updating the interface, so here’s the breakdown of how the app works now.

BingMapsWorldTour_1

There are 4 tabs in the welcome panel – Welcome, Highlights, Filter and Other Releases. The Welcome tab is a text-based overview of the application.

The Highlights tab is a quick view at some of the notable places where imagery was released for the respective release. Here you can see a list of places, with the respective countries, imagery type and total square kilometers for the respective location for that release.

The Filter tab allows you to view all of the imagery for the selected release by either continent or type. So, if you only want to see the new Aerial imagery for Oceania in the February 2010 Part 2 release, you just select “Oceania” then select “Aerial” after setting the release date in the “Other Release” tab.

The Other Releases tab gives you access to previous releases. So, if you want to see the imagery updates for August 2009 click the Other Releases tab and select August, 2009.

Also, notice what appears to be media controls? No, you can’t play music…although, that would be really cool! Those controls are for playing through the slide show of the respective release. Press play and Bing Maps will whizz you around the world zooming down to the respective location where new imagery exists one location at a time. Hit >> to go to the next location and << to go to the previous. We should get some music.

By default, we’re loading the latest and great imagery release. Which reminds me, we just unloaded 2 releases totaling over 6.2 million square kilometers! Holy smokes. When will this madness end??? When we have the whole world? NO! Because we’ll just keep updating it and pumping out new pictures. Here are the details for the March, 2010 Imagery Releases (part 1 and 2).

March, 2010 – Part 1 – 4.9 MILLION square kilometers of new and refreshed imagery! The update includes high resolution 20cm aerial for USA and 60cm satellite updates for Australia, Botswana, Bulgaria, Lesotho, Mexico, Morocco, Namibia, New Zealand, Romania, Russian Federation, Slovakia, South Africa and Turkey.

BingMapsWorldTour_2

March, 2010 – Part 2 – 1.3 MILLION square kilometers of new and refreshed imagery! The update includes high resolution 20cm aerial for USA, Mexico, Australia, Austria, France, Italy, Japan, Portugal, Slovakia and the UK and 60cm satellite updates for Australia, Chile, Lesotho, Mexico, Namibia, New Zealand, Russian Federation, Slovenia and South Africa.

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8 comments
  1. Chris Pendleton

    @michael – Never fear, we have a strategy here!

    CP

  2. Michael Aaron Griffey

    I love that the maps are constantly updated and probably will only get more rapid. However, I am concerned that there haven’t been any “Streetside” updates for a bit. What gives?

  3. FloydM

    Hi Nathanael,

    First off – THANK YOU for the feedback on the World Tour map app! We’ve recorded it and will see what we can do.

    Let’s address #4 and 5 right away:

    #5 (contradiction between Johannes' app and the World Tour coverage): Yes, you’re correct. There may be some discrepancies between the two listings. The reason is that the Tour in current version is meant as a browsing tour experience, not a reference tool. The more points we upload, the more we risk diluting the tour browsing functionality, so sometimes we don’t publish every point. It doesn’t help that we’re publishing more and more data…100 AOIs used to be a lot, but now we approach 800 or more sometimes…

    #4: (showing the actual areas covered): This is related to the item above (#5) and trying to find that balance. We’re considering how to best do this and will have something for you in the future.

  4. givelord

    Good job! I hope the remaining region of the planet will be done. I enjoy travelling in Africa, I'd like to discover South America and Asia Japan.

  5. Kareena

    Thanks for the Maps..

  6. Nathanael

    Oh, that's what I was forgetting.

    John is spot on.

  7. JohnCz

    I like that you incorporating Bing Maps World Tour. Really nice job there.  However, and it is something I have sent feedback on…it would be cool if we could switch Bing Maps to a fullscreen mode.  In fullscreen mode, the Bing header menu/searchbox would be hidden/autohide. The user would be totally immersed in the mapping application.  Great for laptops with limited screen real estate.  An fun for those who really want delve into apps like WorldWide Telescope.

  8. Nathanael

    I'm very happy to see this come home and be able to actually see the Bird's Eye (and Streetside!) imagery when clicking on an update's pushpin now.

    A few thoughts:

    1) I'd love to be able to filter multiple updates at a time. I'm sure that's taxing with all the pushpins, but there's the suggestion anyway.

    Example: View all Streetside updates from all months.

    2) I still wish that all the updates that are logged on this blog (my fellow readers can use this link to see what I mean: http://www.bing.com/…/default.aspx and more) were browse-able from within the app.

    (This is to say, all the updates from before April 2009 when the app first released.)

    3) I'd still like to see geotagged Photosynths for given months also be available alongside the other imagery types from a specified timeframe.

    (Especially synths with a significant pointcloud for the ground plane.)

    4) Pushpins are okay, but I love Johannes' app that shows the actual area that the updates cover (my fellow readers can view it here: hannesve.cloudapp.net/…/Default.htm ). I'm not sure how well the visibility works on the updates that cover smaller areas, but as long as we still have the highlights and slideshow, smaller ones shouldn't be overlooked.

    (Again, being able to see the area of a synth's footprint in the tiles would be pretty fit.)

    5) There seems to be quite a bit of contradiction between Johannes' app and BM: World Tour as to what updates have occurred.

    Examples: Compare aerial updates in the western USA for February 2010 Part 1 between the two apps.

    Compare Streetside updates in November and December 2009 between the two apps.

    6) Given the complete history of imagery updates accessible in World Tour, it would be good to know which update you're viewing when zoomed in where refreshes have occurred.

    (If you're still licensing both the old imagery and the new – not likely, I know – it would be interesting to flip back and forth like the Haiti earthquake app.)

    That's all I can think of for now.

    Keep up the good work!

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