Just when you thought they were out of ingenious ideas, Google has just enabled Keyhole Satellite support for its popular 'Maps' and 'Local' services. The system allows you to zoom in on almost any spot in North America, and seamlessly transfer between a map or recent satellite view of the area.
"Have you ever wished you could see what someplace looked like before you got there? A house? A hotel? A freeway exit? We thought you might find it useful. Now when you type an address into Google Maps, you can click the 'Satellite' link and see a view of the area. You can zoom, move the view by dragging, and even resize the window just like the normal 'Maps' view. Looking for a new apartment or house? Type in an address you're considering, get a view from the air and, with a quick local search, find out if you can walk to your favorite Saturday morning cup of coffee."
Keyhole support will easily satisfy casual users who downloaded NASA WorldWind to see their house from space. Using Google Maps I was able to make out individual cars on the freeway, and even see my neighbor's pool. (Slide and all) Performance is amazing considering the massive amount of data Google must have stored.
View: Google Blog