Google Begins New Program To Loan Out Street View Trekkers
Google has announced that they are opening up their Street View Trekker program to third-party non-profits. Google is looking to expand Street View imagery off the beat path. To do this, they need to take their Trekker backpacks by foot into areas not accessible by cars or other imaging devices.
The Street View Trekker is a compact version of the same tech used in Google’s Street View cars. The pièce de résistance is a 15-lens camera, mounted atop a spire-like appendage, that can capture 46MP images.
“With 360-degree interactive imagery of the islands, people all over the world can see and explore the beautiful islands before they go, including some remote and hard-to-reach places they may never have discovered on their own,” Google Street View program manager Deanna Yick wrote in a blog post.
Until recently, only Google and select third parties got the opportunity to strap on a Street View Trekker, but now interested organizations can fill out a form to line up for a chance at borrowing one. If you snap top-notch stuff, Google may add your work to its Street View collection, which includes the Galapagos and the Grand Canyon.
As SlashGear reports, the loan scheme is open to tourism boards, non-profits, government agencies, universities, and research groups, with Google asking for details on proposed visits, expectations around what sort of photography might be captured, and why it’s thought that it could benefit Street View. There’s also the thorny matter of whether special permissions are required. “Even for public parks we often need to get written permission, legal releases and/or filming permits from the organization that manages the site” Google points out.
In typical Google style, the company has a YouTube video for the new initiative:
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