Latest in Gear

Image credit: Mapillary

Facebook acquires Google Street View competitor Mapillary

The street imaging platform will now be accessible to commercial users.
320 Shares
Share
Tweet
Share

Sponsored Links

Mapillary
Mapillary

Facebook has done a fair bit with maps in recent times — last year it opened up its AI tool to OpenStreetMap users and announced its plans to recreate an AR planet based on a 3D map of the world. More recently, it’s deployed an interactive map to keep users up-to-date with the spread of COVID-19. Now, it’s acquired Google Street View alternative Mapillary.

Mapillary is a street-level imagery platform that scales and automates mapping. Since 2013, users from some 190 countries have been collecting photos of their neighborhoods using smartphones, with Mapillary’s software stitching them all together to create immersive street-level views. It’s basically a crowd-sourced Google Street View.

Until now, all the imagery on Mapillary has been free to use for anyone for non-commercial purposes, but starting today, it will be free for commercial users as well, which gives us a clue as to how Facebook could include the service on its platform — you can probably expect street shots of businesses on their Facebook pages soon. The acquisition helps to push forward Facebook’s general map-based ambitions, too.

As mentioned, Mapillary is Google Street View’s biggest competitor and has attracted the attention of other major tech companies in its time — Amazon showed keen interest a few years back. Alternatives such as Apple Maps and Bing Maps have tried (and arguably failed) to contend with Google’s offering, but with Facebook at the helm Mapillary could well be the one to take it on seriously.

In this article: news, gear, entertainment
All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Comment
Comments
Share
320 Shares
Share
Tweet
Share

Popular on Engadget

Probe of failed Boeing Starliner launch finds a long list of problems

Probe of failed Boeing Starliner launch finds a long list of problems

View
Canon takes on Sony's A7 series with the full-frame EOS R6 camera

Canon takes on Sony's A7 series with the full-frame EOS R6 camera

View
Facial mocap comes to Unreal Engine via new iPhone app

Facial mocap comes to Unreal Engine via new iPhone app

View
Dell's XPS Desktop fits NVIDIA and AMD graphics inside a smaller case

Dell's XPS Desktop fits NVIDIA and AMD graphics inside a smaller case

View
iPadOS 14 hands-on: Design updates galore

iPadOS 14 hands-on: Design updates galore

View

From around the web

Page 1Page 1ear iconeye iconFill 23text filevr