Microsoft Corp. and Intermap Technologies Corp. today announced the launch of Microsoft’s enhanced Virtual Earth™ 3-D viewing platform based on Intermap Technologies’ highly accurate and up-to-date elevation data for all of Great Britain. Intermap is also creating similar maps for all of Western Europe and the continental United States. The resulting product delivers a more seamless and accurate
3-D experience for all Internet users visiting Microsoft’s Live Search Maps for England, Scotland and Wales.
Intermap’s precise and uniform 3-D digital terrain model serves as the foundation for the placement and alignment of aerial photography and other geospatial images. These images are then layered upon this 3-D foundation to better align and place objects without distortion or undulation, thus creating a superior end product.
“Microsoft is committed to delivering the highest-accuracy and highest-quality product for our Live Search Maps customers, and this enhancement is another step toward meeting this commitment,” said Aric Weiker, director of product management for the Virtual Earth platform at Microsoft. “Having Intermap’s highly accurate and reliable foundation layer under our imagery and building models allows us to provide one of the most accurate viewing experiences on the Internet today.”
Live Search Maps is Microsoft’s online local search and mapping service that combines unique bird’s-eye imagery with advanced driving directions, Yellow Pages and other local search tools. Powered by the company’s Virtual Earth mapping and location platform, these features give users useful new ways to map and find directions to various locations, and to better visualize their surroundings from multiple aerial vantage points.
“This is a fundamental change for the industry as Microsoft raises the bar for accuracy and realistic 3-D experiences,” said Eric DesRoche, senior vice president of automotive and consumer electronics at Intermap. “While an accurate visualization application is important to deliver to consumers, our relationship with Microsoft begins to pave the way for the delivery of additional value-added products for the business and consumer markets within Great Britain, Europe and the U.S.”
As part of Intermap’s worldwide proactive data collection efforts, Great Britain is currently in the company’s data library. In addition, Intermap is now aggressively mapping Europe under its NEXTMap® Europe program. Data for the entire country of Germany is currently being placed in the Intermap library, and data collection for the remainder of Western Europe is scheduled for completion by the end of 2007. The continental U.S. is being mapped concurrently with the European initiative and is scheduled for completion by the end of 2008.