I wonder if Google realized that a lot of companies and government organizations were confused about licensing or ignorantly non-compliant or just gave up and tried some other program. I know in my department we already installed alternative software for most people. Although nothing is as nice or easy for exploring or creating KML files as Google Earth in my experience.
I've never heard of Google Earth alternatives. Any recommendations?
It would need lots of work to become a real alternative though.
You have to specify if it's a Address or a Place (if your initial search doesn't work, which is pretty much always)
It used to be the case that you could search for the name of a store chain (e.g. Systembolaget - the state alcohol stores) and it would show some of their stores on a map around you, nowadays it picks some random one (never close to where you are) and displays that instead.
The same thing has started happening for lots of places that it used to find before, that are now seemingly just gone. In the meantime Apple Maps has been consistently improving and is now my go-to maps application on the phone.
I thought I was the only one. I've found Nokia's HERE Maps to be better overall than Google Maps when I just want to find a place to eat or shop or visit. For navigation, they are about equal in my experience, i.e. if you absolutely know your destination address, Google Maps is as good as, or better than, Nokia's maps at getting you there.
In case some of those terms are undefined: A spot just off the coast of Nigeria is where the 0 degree longitude (Prime Meridian) and the 0 degree latitude (Equator) lines meet. If Google Maps goes there, something zeroed out its latitude and longitude variables, something you'd think they'd test for every so often.
But the "new GMaps quirks" are awful
... in Queens.
We got to a proof-of-concept stage but it's currently on hold (the other two cofounders quit/don't have time for it either), but I think it's certainly a need that isn't being serviced by Google.
My project is called EncontraloCerca, it's supposed to be for Uruguay and Argentina first, but when we get to Stockholm I'll let you know :) .
Hemnet recently created an OSM layer just to get building outlines again.
Having just gone through a recent home buying exercise in mid-west I always reverted to bing maps for a "birds eye view" as they had 4 directions of shots from their plane camera while google just had satellite then went into some kind of rendered/extruded view which was kinda eh.
Now if I compare that to our office in SF then google better than bing for zooming in.
There's also a bunch of "WMS Viewers" that you can point at National Map endpoints (which shouldn't have any licensing issues):
I've never had a use for them so I don't know if one works well and has nice caching features.
I've used it create maps for long bicycle trips in SE Europe. A highest-detail map of the balkans is about 1GB. I used Galileo Offline Maps to render it on an iPhone.
The only issue I'm still trying to figure out when using my phone is how to disable the cell antenna with the GPS antenna still activated to conserve battery.
There is also Backcountry Navigator which has similar features but is only available for Android devices: http://backcountrynavigator.com/
I guess it would at least be fine for visualization.
In general, Google has disdain for the very concept of "offline", so I suspect this feature never happens.
remember: paying users expect support
a. make free without knowing who is using your project
b. make free with knowing who is using your project
The current Linux situation with Google Earth is a joke -- 3 years old, crashes, based on wine, no pro features.
It works beautifully.
The real cost, of course, is maintaining and serving all that data. I expect that Google, in offering Google Earth Pro for free, ensures that no other competition can slide into this space, and, I also expect the incremental revenue associated with the Google Earth Pro licenses probably wasn't worth the cost of not owning that market 100%.
This is going to make life for a lot of the other GIS vendors even more miserable than it already is - I can see MapInfo being annoyed by this decision. Just spitballing, but perhaps Google is looking at acquiring them (or a competitor?)
It is great for viewing and creating small datasets. Viewing larger datasets required a surprising amount of effort in terms of tiling and converting. The tools built into Google Earth were never very good and people were pointed at server products. This was completely at odds with the simple ethos of Google Earth and often lead companies to invest in expensive ESRI products that offered Google Earth support!
Google are concentrating on server products with web interfaces and GE never fit into that. It is fantastic for professional users but Google have no idea how to sell to those kind of people.
I'm not suggesting that Google Earth will ever replace MapInfo/ArcGIS - but don't underestimate how much of the "lower end" GIS market that GoogleEarth took away from them.
So could be that Google is simply moving that team onto more strategically useful projects. Personally I can't see why they kept supporting this as it isn't core business.
Perhaps they're starting to see a handful of people relying on other data sources, so they want to give people an incentive to stick with Google?
Meanwhile it would be great if Google could provide a repository with a linux version that runs flawlessly.
Access to this site is currently restricted
A really nice post-christmas present from Google.
> Error! Your sign up can not be completed due to We're sorry. We are experiencing technical difficulties. Please try again later..
"can not be completed due to We're sorry."
I might start using that as a reason.