A couple of independent sources claim that Google is taking indoor shots nowGoogle is always working on new products and updates and some of the things it reveals turn out to be quite unexpected. But Google Store View, a take on Street View only for interiors? Seems a little a little hard to pull off, yet there are now several reports that Google is indeed working on something like this and has been taking interior shots of small stores in the US.
The rumor came from Search Engine Land which claims it received a tip from the owner of a small nut and candy shop in New York. The store claims that a Google photographer came to visit a short while back and took photos of the store, with permission obviously, from various positions, in all directions at every 6 feet. He also took photos of the product in the store and said they were for new product dubbed "Google Store View."
Apparently, the idea is to enable people to visit stores they may be unfamiliar with. The images would be a part of Google Maps, obviously, and the feature would probably be integrated with Street View. For example, if you were strolling through the city in Street View, there would be some kind of indicators that a store in the area has interior pictures as well and you could enter that view if you chose to.
The rumor was independently verified by Read Write Web with another source so there may be something to it. For its part, Google isn't flat out denying the feature but it certainly isn't confirming it either. "We are always experimenting with new features for Google Maps. We have nothing further to announce at this time," a Google spokesperson said. It seems like a pretty standard response to any rumor, so there's probably not that much to read into it. Even if Google weren't working on something like this, it most likely wouldn't deny outright it anyway. If it is planning something to this effect, it better be prepared for an even bigger struggle than it has had with Street View.