Google Acquires Satellite Mapping Firm Keyhole
After a tip from Andy Beal, I checked out Keyhole Satellite Image mapping and local search tool and absolutely loved it. Basically, with Keyhole you get a satellite image of the world and can view streets in the major cities, political hotspots, and towns (mostly US based towns) while even finding local hospitals, restaurants, and libraries. Just as Keyhole started to generate buzz, Google just acquired the company for an undisclosed amount, adding to the Google search arsenal. Unlike traditional mapping technologies like MapQuest, Keyhole creates a dynamic 3D interface for geographic information.
Keyhole is a great tool for anyone, from a travel agent to a 13 year old studying geography. With an Internet connection, users enter an address or other location information and Keyhole’s software accesses the database and takes them to a digital image of that location on their computer screen. The interactive software then gives users many options, including the ability to zoom in from space-level to street-level, tilt and rotate the view or search for other information such as hotels, parks, ATMs or subways.Keyhole’s technology combines a multi-terabyte database of mapping information and images collected from satellites and airplanes with easy-to-use software.
Jonathan Rosenberg, vice president, Product Management adds “This acquisition gives Google users a powerful new search tool, enabling users to view 3D images of any place on earth as well as tap a rich database of roads, businesses and many other points of interest. Keyhole is a valuable addition to Google’s efforts to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.”
Google also announced, effective immediately, a price reduction for Keyhole 2 LT from $69.95 to $29.95.Keyhole was founded in 2001. Keyhole customers include consumers, large and small businesses and public agencies. Current Keyhole users will benefit from the expanded resources and operational scale made possible by the integration into Google. Their service will continue uninterrupted.