Google has announced a new update for the Street View app on Android devices, which makes it easier for anyone to capture and share images of the world, contributing to the Street View experience for others.
Up until now, while pictures could be submitted by users, they would need to be captured with special hardware, like 360-degree cameras. Now, it's possible to use the Street View app on Android devices - as long as they're compatible with ARCore - to record and upload the images on the spot. The recording process works similarly to a video recording, and Google automatically rotates and positions the images so they fit into the experience.
Google's own cars have captured over 170 billion images from over 10 million miles of road all over the world, but not every place is covered. Either that, or some areas don't get as much attention, so the available imagery is multiple years out of date. With the ability for users to contribute new images, it should be easier for users to find more accurate representations of the real world.
The Street View recording features are available in beta in Toronto (Canada), New York, and Austin (Texas), as well as Nigeria, Indonesia, and Costa Rica. More countries should be supported soon.