Government Rejects Google’s Street View Proposal
A Google Street View car on the streets of Paris. It uses a camera rig comprising of 9 directional cameras for a 360 degree view of the world around it. 
A Google Street View car on the streets of Paris. It uses a camera rig comprising of 9 directional cameras for a 360 degree view of the world around it. (Photo: iStock)

Government Rejects Google’s Street View Proposal

The Indian government has rejected a proposal to roll out Google Street View, an application through which one can explore cities, tourist spots, hills and rivers using 360-degree panoramic and street-level imagery. This is an integral part of the Google Maps application globally, which allows users to experience locations virtually.

Union minister of state for home Hansraj Gangaram Ahir said Google had submitted a proposal on the Google Street View for the government's permission in July 2015. The app allows users to explore places around the world through 360-degree panoramic street level imagery and view public area. It helps tourists familiarise themselves with locations before visiting them, which makes it easier to navigate otherwise unfamiliar places.

As per Google’s plans, using the Google Maps or Street View App one could explore Indian cities, tourist spots, hills and rivers through 360-degree panoramic and street-level imagery.

The internet services giant wanted to cover most parts of India through the Google Street View. While it has been extensively used in the US, Canada and many European countries, its application in India was initially permitted only for a few locations.

Google had on an experimental basis launched street view for some tourist sites such as the Taj Mahal, Red Fort, Qutub Minar, Varanasi river bank, Nalanda University, Mysore Palace, Thanjavur temple and Chinnaswamy stadium, in partnership with the Archaeological Society of India.

Google Street View is a technology featured in Google Maps and Google Earth, which provides panoramic views from positions along many streets in the world.

It was launched in 2007 in several cities in the US and has since expanded to include cities and rural areas worldwide. Google shoots 360 degree photos from specially equipped vehicles and then stitches them together.

Interestingly, while the Indian government has turned down Google’s proposal for Street View, ostensibly for security and privacy reasons, there are other similar apps in India such as Wonobo.com that have mapped some of the cities. Wonobo’s 360 degree photos though are not as high quality as Google’s street view.

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(With inputs from PTI)

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