Ireland Streets are on Google at Last

Google Street View hits the road

Ireland becomes 25th country to get eyes on the ground

Internet | 01 Oct 2010 :  Three years after its initial launch, Google has finally brought its Street View service to Ireland, allowing users to virtually explore the country’s cities, towns and countryside through panoramic street-level imagery.

Some 51,000 miles of road have been driven by Google to collect images for Street View Ireland. Street View only contains imagery that is already visible from public roads and photographs are taken at a point in time and are not live images.

Ireland is the 25th country to launch Street View and tourism, culture and business organisations – including Fáilte Ireland, Daft Media, Chambers Ireland and the Arts Council – have been quick to adopt Street View on their websites having partnered.

Launching Street View in Ireland, Minister for Tourism, Culture and Sport Mary Hanafin said: “Street View is an example of a practical innovation which makes life easier for people using the Internet to locate and research Ireland’s cities, towns and streets. Its applications are many but one of the real benefits for Ireland is from a tourism perspective. Street View will showcase the real beauty of Ireland’s towns and countryside to millions of internet users around the world and has the potential to deliver a welcome boost to visitor numbers to Ireland. With many benefits for businesses, property sellers and the general public the introduction of Street View for Ireland is welcome news.”

Mr. John Herlihy, VP global ad operations and head of Google in Ireland, added: “Street View has been hugely popular with our users in Europe and worldwide and we’re thrilled it’s now available in Ireland, enabling users to see street-level panoramas of major city roads and to look up and print out useful driving directions. Google Maps & Google Earth have long been popular with Irish people and are used by governments, businesses and individuals as essential and informative tools every day of the week – Street View now adds a new dimension.”

Countering allegations that Google Street View compromised individual privacy, Herlihy said: “Our technology is very effective though it may occasionally miss a face or number plate here and there. If users spot something our technology has missed just press ‘report a problem’ and we’ll get it fixed quickly.”

Also commenting on the launch, and the associated concerns Gary Davis, Deputy Data Protection Commissioner, said: “We worked closely with Google to ensure that any privacy concerns that people might have were addressed in advance of the launch date. Inevitably some images of people were captured as the camera-cars were driven on Irish streets. Google has undertaken to blur the faces of such people, as well as car number-plates. This should eliminate most privacy concerns. Where blurring is insufficient or where people wish to remove other information associated with them – including images of their houses – Google has provided an easy-to-use removal tool.”

published by techcentral

uploaded by Niall Mulrine PC CLEAN Navenny, Ballybofey, Co. Donegal, Ireland

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