For those of you who did not know, Google Street View is a technology featured in Google Maps and Google Earth applications that provide panoramic views from various positions along many streets in the world. It was launched in May 2007, originally only in several cities in the United States. Since then it’s gradually expanded to include more cities and rural areas globally.
Today, South Africa was added to the list of countries on Google Street View (just in time for the 2010 FIFA World Cup). Google Street View displays images taken from a fleet of specially adapted cars. Areas not accessible by car, like pedestrian areas, narrow streets, alleys and ski resorts are sometimes covered by Google Trikes (tricycles) or a snowmobile. Each of these vehicles are fitted with 9 directional cameras for 360 degree views at a height of about 2.5 meters, GPS units for positioning and 3 laser range scanners for the measuring of up to 50 meters and 180 degrees in the front of the vehicle. Privacy advocates have objected to this Google feature, for this reason Google Street View has an option that allows users to flag inappropriate or sensitive imagery for Google to review and remove.
This is the introduction video from Google for Street View South Africa:
This is a photo of the Junk Mail Head Office in Pretoria on Google Street View. Click on this link to explore the area via Google Maps.