We can now really appreciate earth the way it was meant to be appreciated, thanks to Google’s new integration of VR on their Google Earth app.
Being one of the biggest supporters and forerunners for Virtual Reality, Google isn’t holding back any punches with its VR development. Google Daydream wasn’t the only thing for users to look forward to, because Google is integrating VR into a lot of its own apps, so more and more people should be excited of the prospects.
Google announced this in a blog post recently, saying that Earth VR will be brought to the HTC Vive. “With Earth VR, you can fly over a city, stand at the top of the highest peaks, and even soar into space,” it stated.
There was also a pretty cool promo of the real-time look of the app through the user’s eyes. There are 3D flyovers and other architectural marvels that the user can easily flick through. They get to have the planet literally in the palm of their hands. There are also a very specific set of interactive experiences for users to go through in the app at locations like the Manhattan Skyline, Grand Canyon, Swiss Alps and Amazon River, among others.
This isn’t the first time that Google has dabbled into VR in such a grand scale. For those not in the know, a similar app called the Tilt Brush allow users to literally paint brush in 3D in VR. Google has since updated the app with plenty of new updates and features adding more fun for users. And we’re expecting them to do the same and add more experiences with the new Earth VR app as well.
Earth VR won’t be available immediately, as it’s exclusive to the HTC Vive for now through the Steam Store. Even better news is that it’ll be available for the low price of free.
Because Google Earth takes in images from Satellites, Street View and other 3D image-mapping tech, the quality borrowed from those sources will not be the best to look at in VR. So some places might look a little sketchy for now. But that’s okay for an initial release. Google probably will take a look at that and try to enhance the quality as more updates arrive in the near future.
This gives a whole new meaning to the phrase – ‘arm-chair traveller.’