To celebrate its 15th anniversary, Google Street View makes the impossible possible

Fifteen years and 400 times around the Earth later, Google Street view still promises great years of innovation. In addition to the more pronounced use of artificial intelligence and augmented reality, the tool of the American giant opens up to new places to discover. Because for fifteen years, Google Street View has captured more than 100 countries and intends to continue the path traveled by going beyond these 220 billion images accessible by everyone.

If we all know the famous “Google street car” which roams from city to city, the question now arises of accessibility in places that are not. In fact, for years, Google Street View has wanted to make capture as mobile as possible to access perilous and sometimes dangerous areas. A camera placed on a camel’s back in the desert or on a snowmobile in the middle of the Arctic ice pack, so many options invented by Google to create the most immersive maps.

In 2023, Google Street View will even give birth to its new jewel, a small robot, with the false air of Wall-E, which will make it possible to take on-board shots on any vehicle. A feat because “all the load, resolution and computing power, hitherto integrated into a car, will now be available in a single camera weighing less than 7 kg, ultra-portable and customizable”, underlines the Google team. .

Stratospheric captures

Thanks to these new tools, Google Street View intends to travel a little further… as far as the International Space Station (ISS) for example, as in 2017. During the expedition of French astronaut Thomas Pesquet, Google Street View allowed internet users to discover the world of the capsule with a 360° view inside the station.

But if you prefer to keep your feet on the ground, Google Street View also allows you to discover many places popular with tourists and sometimes very secret. Third most visited site in the world on Google Street View, behind Dubai’s Burj Khalifa and the Eiffel Tower, the Taj Mahal is full of inaccessible places. And while Google Street View had not even been launched in India yet, Internet users were able to make it possible to explore this unique collection both indoors and outdoors.

“A place with a thousand faces”

Behind this wealth of images, Google boasts an ambition to open up to culture. ten years, the Google arts and culture team opened the doors of more than 2,000 cultural institutions around the world, in order to “feed the appetite of the Internet user online”, underlines its head of partnerships Pierre Cesa.

The latest, the Army Museum and the Hôtel National des Invalides now wants to open up to Internet users by showing them its most secret walks. “A place with a thousand faces”, says Cécile Chassagne, head of digital and innovation mission at the Army Museum and the Hôtel national des Invalides. Since this Tuesday, the most curious can explore the Dôme des Invalides, get closer to the crypt of the tomb of Napoleon 1st or even climb to the Lanternon which reveals a panoramic view of Paris. “There is a spectacular side to the place, but also a hidden side. Whether it’s in the attic of the cathedral or at the level of the frescoes, when you arrive in these places for the first time, it’s stunning and we wanted to share it with everyone,” says Cécile Chassagne.

The view from the lantern – Google Street View

A collaborative and scalable tool

To access these tight spots, the Parisian Google Street View team this time used a tripod, which can help capture that famous 360-degree image. Beyond its great panorama, the tripod is also a formidable weapon. “There were still 107 meters of stairs and it was tiny,” says Pierre Caessa, supporting evidence with a video of a more than cramped staircase. Even more exceptional, the shooting even allows the Internet user to perceive tiny details such as inscriptions left by the painter Charles de La Fosse in the 18th century.

The inscriptions left by the painter
The inscriptions left by the painter – Google Street View

A partnership that is likely to last over time, assures the two parties, which underlines the richness of this collaborative tool where Internet users can also capture their own landscapes. “It’s so scalable,” rejoices Pierre Caessa, assuring that nice surprises are still to come.

Paris among the most visited places on Google street view

For the first time, Google Street View has unveiled the top 10 most visited cities in the world. On the podium, we find Jakarta, Tokyo and Mexico City. Then follow São Polo, Buenos Aires, New York, Istanbul, Taipei, Paris and Osaka.

While France is also one of the most visited countries on the site, certain monuments attract much more attention, such as the Eiffel Tower (1st), the Louvre Museum (3rd) or even Disneyland Paris (5th). More surprisingly, the Ocean Serpent, a monumental work immersed in the waters of Saint-Brévin-les-Pins (Loire-Atlantique) ranks second among the most visited French places.

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