What is the story behind Google Maps ?
Our life will become very difficult without Google Maps – Uber will not be able to find you easily or your pizza delivery will be delayed in the absence of Google Maps.
So, No doubt it has become a part of our life
But do you know how it all started ?
Let’s dive in.
Year 2004 – The Beginning
Google map was started as a C++ desktop application like many other softwares that time. It was was designed by two Danish brothers, Lars and Jens Elistrup Rasmussen at a ‘Where 2 technologies’ based in Sydney. It was initially named – The Expedition . It was designed to be separately downloaded by users that means it was like a downloadable map.
The company (Where 2 technologies), later pitched the idea to Google. Google and Larry Page demanded a web based application as they were interested in the web. So the company developed an Ajax based program that can run in a web browser and ‘where 2’ was acquired by Google in October,2004.
In the same month Google acquired Keyhole – A geospatial data visualisation company who developed Earth Viewer which later became successful as Google Earth. In September, 2004 before the acquisition of ‘Where2’ Google acquired ZipDash – This company worked for providing data on realtime traffic analysis.
Year 2005 – 2008
The Google Maps was first launched in feb,2005.
Google added road maps features for US and Europe region and they continued the expansion. Also local traffic details was added in the year 2007.
On May 29, 2007, Street View feature was introduced, giving a ground-level 360-degree view of streets in some major cities in United States .
In the same year they released a mobile version which used GPS.
Year 2008 -2012
Google released an android based application in September 2008 with the announcement of first commercial android device.
Apple removed Google Maps from its operating system version iOS 6 as a default app and hence in December 2012, the Google Maps application was launched for iPhone seperately and was aaded in the App Store.
Year 2012 and afterwards
On January 29, 2013, Google Maps included a map of North Korea but it is not very useful even today as Google Maps do not show much of North Korea, It shows a very few number of places of the country. In the same year on May 3, 2013, Google Maps recognized Palestine as a country earlier to this it was redirecting to the Palestinian territories.
In Aug 2013, Google Maps Also removed the Wikipedia Layer, it was helpful as it provided links to relevant Wikipedia content about locations shown in Google Maps. It used Wikipedia geocodes to serve the purpose.
Google has put so much efforts in the making of todays’s Google Maps, They systematically acquired all the companies who could be used to make the Map better, they kept on improving it over the years. As many advancements have been taking place to improve the Google Maps, they worked for the. In our journey of Google Maps, we have gone through the the story behind Google Maps and now lets move to some interesting facts about Google Maps