Google’s Map Maker edit tool given full UK coverage
Google Map Maker, a browser based editing software which enables people to fiddle with map details such as places, roads, buildings and natural features, has been introduced in the UK for the first time.
This presents budding cartographers with a succession of click through menus to insert relevant links; building up a ‘confidence score’ to make further changes as they do so.
Proposed changes are peer reviewed by other users and Google before going live, ensuring as accurate a portrayal of local geography as possible.
Competition in the mapping business is heating up with Apple and Nokia launching their own free mapping services for smartphone users, increasing the pressure on Google to innovate to retain its market leading position.
Though loss leaders at present such software could one day prove to be a gold mine by playing host to location specific ads targeted at individuals as they navigate their way around the world.
Google’s latest crowd sourcing bid is an effort to add detail to its existing maps which have been licensed from third parties, including hard to reach areas in Pakistan, US and even the hermit state of North Korea. Until now however the UK was absent from this list, an anomaly Google put down to ‘technical obstacles’.