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Google Earth Is Now Available in Virtual Reality

Nov 17, 2016 08:18 AM EST

Virtual reality used to be a technological fantasy for people decades ago, but now it is a reality, and it is all within everybody's reach. People are excited to hear the news that Google Earth is finally converging with the world of VR, allowing its users to literally "fly" throughout the world. 

This is definitely a better experience than the conventional Google Earth. Google Earth VR allows a person to soar through the sky, whereas the latter only has a tiny "peg man" avatar that leads the way through street view. The biggest difference is that a person can not only look at the aerial 3-D view of the world but also spin around and even see how different the place could be at different times of the day. There is a touch controller for which the user could 'summon' a digital globe to choose places she wants to visit.

Those who have tested the pioneer set has exclaimed their awe and amazement at how comfortable the device and the experience is. Google Engineering Lead, Dominik Kaeser, has made sure that the users will never feel sick. They have ensured that people will always feel like their feet are touching the ground.

This newest addition to the Google Earth platform comes as a free download only with the HTC Vive Headset. However, there is no need to fret as Google plans to expand their compatibility with other devices. Google also has a plan to release a version compatible to the Daydream View VR Headset.

Popular reviews from CNET indicated that the downside to this is that Google Earth VR requires some heavy machinery as it has been built for powerful VR headsets like Vive and Oculus Rift. These are devices that require high-end graphics cards and substantial computing power, both of which could be quite pricey. Furthermore, these are devices that would be hard to use on mobile. And maybe after some time, it will be available for mobile use.

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