Bing Maps Launches Streetslide View

As expected Bing Maps team today announced the availability of Bing Maps Streetside view. The new Streetside view will replace the existing streetview of the Bing Maps. Google first launched the streetview images in US almost 4 years back which became famous wy of virtually exploring the world. But it was not so much convenient for exploring business collections, for which the new Streetside view from Bing will address the problems.

From Bing Blog,

If you take a look at a Bing map in Streetside view today you will notice that we’ve made a lot of changes. These changes represent a significant enhancement for desktop browsers, enabling you to quickly pan up and down the street to see the neighborhood and find businesses. We are doing this by providing street level panoramas so you can take a virtual walk through the streets with a view of locations and landmarks. As you slide the street level imagery sideways, the view of the sidewalk is seamlessly constructed including an overlay of business listings, street names and store fronts. Check it out in a flat, straight, New York street, or a steep, twisty, San Francisco one.

Why the change? In the past you explored Streetside imagery by navigating between “bubbles,” or discrete 360 degree views, and moving down the street was accomplished by jumping from bubble to bubble. This works, but makes it difficult for you to get a sense for a larger area like a city block. Moreover, it’s hard to pick out storefronts farther away since you really only see the ones directly perpendicular to your viewpoint with great clarity.

This new style, on the other hand, keeps the immersive experience but adds smooth left/right panning navigation that makes it easy to find what’s nearby more quickly. The street flows by as a series of smooth ground-level photographs so now you simply pan up and down the street to see the neighborhood and find what you are looking for.

While you are moving around in this new view you can keep track of where you are by looking at the street map above the imagery. Right below the images you will see an overlay of the names of businesses and bus stops, reducing clutter and providing location context.

Want to see what’s across the street? Click the “u-turn” icon next to the street name in the upper left of the image. Want to see what’s down a cross street? Just click on the street name, if there is Streetside imagery available for that area you will rotate onto it.

There’s a lot to this new way of navigating, so we hope you try it out for yourselves. This feature is the product of a technology transfer from the Microsoft Research Interactive Visual Media group’s Street Slide project, which demonstrated how street-level visualization and navigation could be dramatically improved (and why users of ourBing app for iOS may find this new look familiar).

  • Maximilian Hernandez

    This version isn’t as good as the one demoed before, I hope they make it more imersive than it is now, when you zoom all the way in, you’re supposed to go back to a 360 angle view.

    • Nic Ditto

      The demo did seem better. I’m still excited for it. I think they have something here.

  • Monkey D Black

    it’s ok, but I find the older version more visually pleasing. this version just seems to chop the images up it doesn’t give proper depth. 

  • Anonymous

    why does MS feel the need to mess up everything? This is horrble

  • Jimmy Fallon

    the map view up top is way too thin, I should at least be able to adjust that.

  • peter terry

    its true that the view seems chopped up, the images are not blended to form a continuous picture.
    however, it is actually much faster to investigate the environment surrounding the address you are looking for, than with the old street view, where you had to do a lot of changing position and turning around.  it was more like a videogame, but not as functional.

  • WixosTrix

    I think they have a good idea here, just a very poor implementation (typical Microsoft).  All the image technology they have and this is what they release… Hopefully, this is just the beginning.  Can we get a beta tag?

  • Iroquei

    Bing USA is awesome, but sucks in the rest of the world. In Spain with my PC or my WP7 without Google Maps i’m lost :(

    • George Pucci

      Same here in Brazil

  • Anonymous

    Not quite what I was hoping for….