Over the past few months the Street View mobile app has received a number of updates. Here’s a quick start guide to using it to publish your photos to Google Maps.
The Google Street View mobile app is designed for both viewing and managing Street View images.
For this post I’ll take a quick look at the management and upload functionality the app provides for panoramic photos you capture…
- Cost: Free
- Type: Mobile App (iOS / Android)
- Version reviewed: Android 126.96.36.1990158636 (publish date: 5th Jan 2021)
- Camera Support: Phone camera and multiple external 360 cameras connected via Bluetooth
- Ease of use: Easy
- Functionality: Limited
The Google Street View mobile app allows users to:
- create a panorama to upload using their phone
- select panoramas that already exist to upload, or
- connect a camera that supports the Google Street View App.
Capture a Panorama
If you want to capture a panorama and add it to Google Maps / Street View on the fly, you can use the app to create one using your phones camera.
Use Existing Panoramas
If you’ve already taken panoramas, either with your phone or a separate 360 camera, it’s possible to use the app to upload these too.
In the screenshot above you can see photos captured on a GoPro MAX (from our recent adventure to Kilimanjaro) and stored in a Google Drive folder.
External Camera Support
Many manufacturers build support for the official Street View app into their cameras’ software.
This works by connecting the camera (usually over WiFi) to your phone. As the camera takes photos, or shoots video, the app automatically picks it up and captures it in the app.
This list has not been update for over a year. Some of these cameras have since been discontinued.
Once you’ve captured your images, you can prepare them to upload to Street View.
The “auto-connect 360 photos” feature is a setting that can be very useful. It will join your photos and automatically connect them to create a blue line.
Before you hit the publish button, you can also blur parts of the photo that contain personally identifiable information (like faces or license plates).
Once you’ve uploaded content to Street View, you can track how many times they’ve been viewed.
The app also includes gamification of image capture in the form of badges. You can currently earn the following badges:
- Explorer: 1km of images published to Street View
- Expert: 100km of images published to Street View
- Master: 1000km of images published to Street View
3rd Party Software
There is a variety of other bits of software also available offering additional functionality over the Street View app for off-road photographers wanting to upload their photos to Street View, including the Map the Paths Uploader.
Stay tuned for a post next week comparing software to upload off-road images and videos to Google Street View…