Google Car comes to India

Google street views — which allows users to ‘go down into the street’ when using Google Maps or Google Earth — seems to be on its way to India, according to a sighting of what seems like the ‘Google Car’ on the streets of New Delhi.

RTN found a Mahindra Bolero with a five-faced camera riding down Delhi’s Mathura Road — making it the first possible sighting of the Google Car in India.

Google does not advertise or label its Google Car, partly because it wants to remain inconspicuous over concerns of privacy.

The feature was first launched in the US in 2007 and spread to Europe and Australia over the next two years.

India will be one of the first Asian countries, after Japan, to have Google Street Views if the sighting was indeed of a Google car.

Users can have a virtual ‘walk down’ of streets which have been absorbed by Google’s cameras under the Street View program.

Currently, the feature is accessible after a user zooms into a US or European city beyond a particular limit. Unlike the traditional map, Google Street View is 3-Dimensional. In other words, the user feels as if he or she is standing on the street and can turn around (with the mouse) and see the sights changing, as if he or she is looking around in real.

Google Street View is seen as the first step towards creating an ‘immersive reality’ or ‘virtual reality’ for Internet applications. Along with 3D goggles, applications such as Google Street View are expected to ‘transport’ users into different lands without leaving their chairs.

While Google Car equipment in the West have elaborate equipment associated with the camera, the Delhi car had only the cameras and what seemed like the wifi and cellular signal detector. Google also makes a list of Wi-Fi spots for users to log into.