Google Street View has mapped 25 cities since March 2009, but the increased coverage makes an additional 210,000 miles of detailed imaging available.
Street View has been hit by concerns that the detailed street-level information could be exploited by criminals or that it’s simply too much of an intrusion into people’s privacy.
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Google insists it is possible to preserve anonymity – the imaging automatically blurs number plates and faces. People can also ask for their cars and homes to be taken off.
The expanded service means we’ll have the same coverage as Spain, France, Italy and the Netherlands. Germany has continued to hold out due to privacy concerns.
Because Street View images look best in dry, overcast conditions, Google said its biggest challenge getting going nationwide in the UK was our good old dreary weather.