Google Earth

  • Developer: Google
  • Genre: Travel & Local
  • Version: latest
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Official information

Release Date June 11, 2001
Developer Google
Publisher Google
Genre Travel & Local
Language English, 30+
System Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, iOS
Version latest

Screenshots

Google Earth Review: Keep Your Eyes in the Skies

Google Earth is a cartographical app that grants you access to the 3D model of our planet. You can learn about geographical landscapes, historical landmarks, weather condition, roads/routes and watch 3D photos of the most picturesque places on Earth.

Google Earth is like one of those globes all of us used to have in the classroom. Only it's digital, and it allows access to various view modes and gets updated permanently as the changes affect real-life cities, towns, villages, etc.

It is an indispensable tool if you study geography, plan an ambitious and lengthy trip abroad, need to organize international logistics or find the shortest truck route and so forth.

Take over the planet!

Google Earth for PC and other platforms presents a neat picture of our big blue marble floating in the darkness of cosmos - even dimly twinkling stars and nebulas were added as extra decorations.

The planet is rotatable - tools for that option are located on the right of the screen, or you can just spin it like a dreidel with the mouse arrow. The responsiveness is fantastic: you can make it whirl non-stop until it gives you vertigo and yet there will be no fps freezes. 

You can adjust the size of the planet and turn it into a tiny blue ball or zoom in until clouds, mountains, forests, rivers & lakes, etc. become clearly visible. All by scrolling the mouse wheel.

Perhaps what makes the app remarkable is a cornucopia of features. The application has a variety of manageable layers, which include:

  • Roads - thin lines, highlighted in soft yellow color. Very helpful for calculating/studying a route.
  • Gallery - it displays tracks suitable for jogging or cycling, national parks, drama/movie theatres, cafes, and memorable landmarks. For example, the legendary pub Cavern, where The Beatles performed for the first time, will be shown in Liverpool.
  • Global problems - this layer notifies you about such issues as endangered animal species, high corruption rates, areas stricken by poverty and so on. Sadly, no warnings are provided about civil unrest or active wars going on.
  • Weather - this layer mostly monitors cloudiness in real time. This may prove to be especially handy for tourists since airports are put on the map as well, and you can predict whether your flight will be delayed or not.
  • Ocean - shows the most popular diving location and also coordinates of the sunken ships.
  • Photos - find 360 photo galleries, shot at the most spectacular areas on Earth. Be it Morfa Bychan in Wales or Coliseum in Rome - simply click on the image and the app will take you to the panoramic 3D photo.

The app will provide you with a brief note on almost every historical object or city if you click on it. And if you need more info then news reports, posts from Facebook, National Geographic articles and various services, including WikiLoc or Webcams.travel are at your disposal.

Additionally, you can exploit the toolbar in order to print a map, email coordinates/route to other people, schedule your journey or even do a little time travel by choosing "older satellite photos" regime and pushing the slider back into the history.

Besides the program is multiplatform and you can download Google Earth Pro for Mac, Windows or Google Earth Pro for Linux no sweat.

With Google Earth the whole world in the palm of your hand

Google Earth for Android is available as well, allowing you to make your traveling much more comfortable. The current version of the app - that is 9.2 - has fixed a lot of issues, and now the zoom-in animation is much smoother than before.

Perhaps the only major drawback is that some of the 3D panoramic views are heavily glitched and refuse to load all of the textures completely, making buildings and streets look like a post-apocalyptic landscape. As for the rest all the vital functions are present and work finely - simply download the Google Earth apk to test it. 

Google Earth for iPhone (and iOS in general) has identical features.

8 Google Earth Handy Lifehacks

It feels that Google Earth review is obliged to disclose a couple of power-tips to let you use the app to the fullest.

1. Offline is fine

Although updates are crucial to the app and you can't monitor frequently changing conditions like weather without it, it is possible to save up to 2 GB of the cache data. Just go to a certain area, let's say Red Square in Moscow and wait until the cache indicator reaches 100% mark. The indicator is a small dark blue circle in the right bottom corner.

2. Google Earth for Kindle Fire

Kindle Fire owners can enjoy the app too, but they either have to root their devices or install Google Play.

3. Walking on the Moon

Apart from Earth, you can also visit the Moon, Mars or explore constellations, visible from our planet. Here's a little tip: select Mars, type in Olympus Mons and enjoy the view of the tallest mountain in the Solar System. Well, the volcano to be precise.

4. Daylight tool

Click on the sun behind a cloud icon and regulate the slider to learn what any given location looks like, during different stages of the days: twilight, early morning, sunset, afternoon, etc.

5. The streets are calling

The Street View mode allows you to do a little touring through almost every city or town in the world. In case you have a rendezvous scheduled in a poorly known area or wonder what the hotel you're staying at looks like - drag the tiny yellow human figure from the right panel to a street in question. It may save you from aimless wandering or arriving late to a date.

6. Be an architect

You can modify the maps in Google Earth for Windows 7, 8, 10 and other OSes by constructing the 3D building models and submitting them to Google. For that, you'll need software called Sketchup and a camera.

7. Compatibility

The app is available on almost every platform, except maybe there's no Google Earth for Blackberry (but again emulating is a miracle-worker).

Meanwhile, Google Earth for Ubuntu is not a myth:

  1. Enter sudo apt update command to check if your system is updated.
  2. Install GDebi: sudo apt install gdebi.
  3. Learn if your system is 32/64 bit.
  4. Visit pkgs.org

Then find and install those packages:

  • isb-invalid-mta: [all] lsb-invalid-mta_4.1+Debian11ubuntu8_all.deb;
  • isb-security: [64bit] lsb-security_4.1+Debian11ubuntu8_amd64.deb, [32bit] lsb-security_4.1+Debian11ubuntu8_i386.deb;
  • isb-core: [64bit] lsb-core_4.1+Debian11ubuntu8_amd64.deb [32bit] lsb-core_4.1+Debian11ubuntu8_i386.deb

After the deed is done go to the official website and download the Google Earth 32 bit or Google Earth 64 bit, according to your Ubuntu's specifications.

Google Earth for Vista and Google Earth for XP are still supported.

8. Fly high

In the Street View, you can take a walk through the streets of Seoul, Munich or Saint-Petersburg, calmly rambling from one block to another and enjoying the sights of the Gyeongbokgung Palace or Hermitage.

But what if you could fly instead of just making your virtual legs do extra work? For that purpose, the app has the Flight Simulator.

To activate it:

  1. Select Tools.
  2. Click on Enter Flight Simulator.

There you can choose between supersonic jet-fighter F-16, a.k.a. Viper and SR-22. But first, choose the airport. Page Up, arrow buttons, Spacebar, Alt and Ctrl are the keyboard controls.

Conclusion

Google Earth is an amazing program for leisure, work, and study. So get your own desktop version if you prefer traveling while sitting in your chair or download Google Earth Android apk if you can't imagine your life without adventures - it's both fine.

Cons:

  • Glitchy panoramic views in the mobile app
  • No info about dangerous areas
  • App crashes when switching planet

Pros:

  • Easy route calculation
  • Weather monitoring
  • 3D photo galleries
  • Street View mode Google Earth app has an online version

Interface

Features

Usability

Compatibility

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