Online mapping services are becoming increasingly popular and useful and, as a result of that, more profitable for those running them. All the big players are present in the space, Google, of course, which started it all, but also Yahoo and Microsoft. They each have their advantages, but what most people don't realize is that they all share pretty much the same mapping data, from the same providers. It's no surprise then that Google and Bing announced new satellite imagery on the very same day.
“We just shipped another 9,460 square kilometers of imagery onto Bing Maps. This month’s release showcases high precision imagery for the USA, Canada and the United Kingdom… it’s all 15-30 centimeter resolution imagery, so it’s pretty stunning,” the Bing Maps blog announced.
Google also introduced updated imagery, but it also announced that it was stepping up the update frequency. “Today, I'm happy to announce that we're increasing the frequency of our updates to bring you the world's freshest and most complete imagery,” Senior Geo Data Strategist Matt Manolides wrote. “As a part of this announcement, we're also making some changes to the way that we tell you about new imagery.”
Bing provided updated data for some English-language regions with some pretty high-resolution photos. It also updated some of the road data, though it hasn't released much details on that. You can check out new mapping data in the Bing Maps World Tour application that Microsoft provided.
The interesting part of the Google announcement doesn’t necessarily lie in the images themselves, but in the fact that it has increased the rate at which these updates will come. Along with this, Google has also changed the way it will present the new data by providing users with a link to preview it inside Google Earth, but also with an embedded Earth plugin.