The geo mapping platform ecosystem has grown a little more as the competition between Google Maps and Bing Maps just got a lot more interesting. It's been less than a week since we covered the release of a variety of new features for Bing Maps, including the addition of new StreetSide panoramic imagery similar to that used in Google Maps StreetView. At the time, it seems that Bing Maps was making a move to "catch up" with Google Maps in terms of immersive street-level panoramic photos. And now Google has countered back with the release of "aerial perspective imagery" similar to the Bird's Eye View imagery used in Google Maps.
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Here is some interesting news that may impact developers using the Google Maps API (our Google Maps API profile). Google has recently made a couple of updates to their terms of service and have posted the the new terms of service here. There was an initial update made in early November, but one that lead to some debate and confusion about a couple of points, which in turn to a subsequent update. The net result is that the terms of service have been streamlined and some previous restrictions have been removed, including a restriction on the use of Google Maps in desktop applications. Here's a summary of the changes: