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Earlier today we reported Microsoft's new addition to its mapping service. Google today at the Where 2.0 conference in San Jose also announced a new feature to its Google Maps service which allows a 360 degree view of many streets in the San Francisco Bay Area, New York, Las Vegas, Denver and Miami, with other cities to roll out later, the new feature will let you move along the street in a smooth way using directional arrows that can be clicked on to proceed in that direction.
"It's a valuable addition to maps and complements the satellite view," said Greg Sterling, founder of consultancy Sterling Market Intelligence. "Microsoft has had this for over a year but hasn't rolled it out beyond Seattle and San Francisco. (Amazon.com's) A-9 also had it, but shut it down."
Google gathered its first images driving around the Bay Area on its own vans but partnered with Immersive Media, a company that has taken high-res video while driving along city streets and geotagged each captured pixel, for images in the other cities. You can check an example and interact with the map at a street level to really get the idea.