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    9 things to know about Google's maps data: Beyond the Map

    Frequently asked questions about Google Maps data and answered


    9 things to know about Google's maps data: Beyond the Map

    Header Ethan Russell Product Director September 30, 2019

    With more than a billion people using Google Maps every month and more than 5 million active apps and websites using Google Maps Platform core products every week, we get questions about where our maps data come from, how we keep it accurate, and more. So before we get to our third installment of the Beyond the Map series, we sat down with product director Ethan Russell to get answers to a few frequently asked questions about our maps data and how you can help us keep it up to date for your very own applications and experiences.

    How do you make sure Google’s maps data is accurate?The world is a vast and constantly changing place. Think about how frequently restaurants in your neighborhood come and go, and then consider all the businesses, buildings, homes and roads that are built–and then scale that up to more than 220 countries and regions that are home to more than 7 billion people in the world. We want everyone on the planet to have an accurate, up-to-date map, but there’s a lot going on! So our work is never done and we have a variety of different efforts and technologies helping us keep our maps data as up to date as possible. If you haven’t read the first two installments of the Beyond the Map series, they’re a good start in learning more about how we map the world and keep our data up to date. The first post gives you an overview of our mapping efforts and the second post explains how imagery is the foundation of our mapping techniques. But something we haven’t highlighted in the series yet is how we empower our customers, businesses, and users to contribute what they know about the world and keep our data up to date for themselves and each other.How can I submit updated information?There are a few different channels for people, businesses, and customers to help update our maps data when something’s not right. Anyone who uses Google Maps can let us know about data issues via the Send Feedback (desktop Maps) and Suggest an Edit (place profiles on Maps and Search) tools. For Google Maps Platform customers using one of our industry solutions (like gaming), the product includes an API for reporting bad points, enabling our game studio partners to report issues to us so we can take action accordingly. And of course if a customer is working closely with our customer engineering teams or an account manager, then they can always work directly with them or the support team to get the information updated. Businesses and agencies that manage business info can also update their business information via Google My Business.Are there any other ways that Google finds updated information beyond user contributions?Within Google, we have a dedicated team working on keeping our data up to date day in and day out. This covers things like incorporating data from third party resources, developing algorithms to automatically update data and identify spam or fraud, and reaching out directly to businesses and organizations to get accurate info.How often is your maps data updated?The map is updated constantly–literally, every second of every day! We’re constantly collecting new information about the world, whether from satellite imagery and Street View cars, or Google Maps users and local business owners, and using that information to update the map. Google Maps users contribute more than 20 million pieces of information every day–that’s more than 200 contributions every second. In addition to the updates we make from what people tell us, we’re making countless updates uncovered through other means like the imagery and machine learning efforts we’ve shared with you in the recent Beyond the Map blog posts posts.If a business or organization has a lot of data to contribute, how can they do that?For organizations like governments, non-profits, and educational institutions that have large amounts of data about things like new roads or addresses of new buildings, they can use the new Geo Data Upload tool. When submitting via the tool, it’s important that you send data in the right format, so we can ingest the files easier–a shapefile (.shp) or .csv with spatial attributes are preferred file types. If you’re ready to submit your data, it’s helpful that you and your team review our upload content requirements (which you can do at this support page).

    Agencies that manage online marketing for a variety of businesses can use Google My Business to add and update business information. Not only does it get business info into our Places APIs, but it offers a wide range of tools to help businesses better connect with consumers through features like messaging, product inventory, and more on Google Maps and Search.

    How do you manage the vast amounts of data it takes to keep up with the changing world?Given that we’re building maps at a truly global scale, you can imagine we process a lot of information. We have many different types of data–roads, buildings, addresses, businesses, and all their various attributes–and imagery from different viewpoints at high resolution. Luckily, we’re not starting from scratch here. From processing and storage systems like Dataflow and Cloud Spanner to machine learning libraries and frameworks like TensorFlow, we’re able to make sense of a river of incoming data.Why are there differences in data quality in various parts of the world? And how do you address these differences to make sure businesses everywhere can use Google Maps Platform?

    Source : cloud.google.com

    How Often Does Google Maps Update Satellite Images?

    Find out how often Google Maps updates its satellite images and how to tell when a map was last updated by checking specific features and timestamps on the map. Predicting the exact update timing is not possible signing up for alerts to updates on specific maps is a useful tool.

    How Often Does Google Maps Update Satellite Images?

    By Carol Finch

    Updated May 24, 2020

    Techwalla may earn compensation through affiliate links in this story.

    Google maps update their maps every 1 to 3 years.

    Image Credit: sukanya sitthikongsak/Moment/GettyImages

    If you're browsing Google Maps in Satellite View, you may notice that location details are not always up-to-date. Google Maps uses the same satellite data as Google Earth. Although these images update regularly, you typically won't see live changes, and there may be a lag of up to a few years between the satellite image you see on your screen and the the way a location looks in real life.


    You can't predict when a map will change, but you can get help from Google Earth to find out the date of its last update. With Google's Follow Your World tool, you can also sign up for email notifications when specific location images change.

    Google Maps Update Schedules

    The satellite data on Google Maps is typically between 1 to 3 years old. According to the Google Earth Blog, data updates usually happen about once a month, but they may not show real-time images. Google Earth gathers data from various satellite and aerial photography sources, and it can take months to process, compare and set up the data before it appears on a map.


    There are times when Google Maps updates in real-time to mark major events and to give assistance in emergency situations. For example, it updated imagery for the 2012 London Olympic Games just before the Opening Ceremony, and it provided updated satellite crisis maps to help aid teams assess damage and target locations in need of help shortly after the Nepal earthquake in April 2015.


    These real-time updates are not common and map lovers can enjoy surfing the maps while watching instant satellite imagery updating. Otherwise, waiting months or even years for updates to take effect is not uncommon.

    Google Map Date Locations

    You can't find out when a map was last updated on Google Maps. However, you can find this data by downloading Google Earth and searching for the location in that program. If you go to the bottom of the satellite map, you see a date stamp marking the last update. This stamp is the easiest method of quickly determining the last update.



    If you're interested in learning how locations have changed over the years, select the Historical Imagery button on the Google Earth toolbar. This opens a slider, marking the dates of old updates, so you can go back in time.

    Get Google Map Updates

    If you want to find out when Google Maps updates a specific location, you can set an alert on its Follow Your World tool. You receive an email every time Google updates a location you set as a Point. This is an excellent resource for anyone tracking updates and geographical changes to very specific locations.


    You need a Google account to log in to the tool. Once you're logged in:

    Go to the Home screen and enter a location in the Find a Location box.

    Select Search Location and drag the map until the + is on the spot you want to track.

    Click the Select Point button. The tool enters latitude and longitude for you.

    If you want to give the point a different name, change it in the Location Name box.

    Check that your email address is correct and select Submit.


    You receive an email notification confirming that you've set up the alert, with a warning that updates can take "weeks, months and even years." Next time Google Maps updates this location, it will email you.


    You can view and delete alerts in the Follow My World dashboard.

    Advertisement References

    Techwalla may earn compensation through affiliate links in this story.

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    Source : www.techwalla.com

    How Often Does Google Maps Update Satellite Images?

    Google Maps has transformed the way we see our world. There’s no doubt about it. If you’re using Google Maps in Satellite View, you’re given a close-up, bird’s eye view of virtually every location on planet Earth. However, you may be wondering how often these Satellite images update. In fact, you may often notice outdated views or location details that are not quite accurate. Regardless if you’re using Google Earth or Google Maps, they pull their data from the same sources. Note: At no extra cost to you, we may earn a commission for purchases using our links. Learn more.

    Nerd Techy

    Your Guide to New Technology

    How Often Does Google Maps Update Satellite Images?

    TechGuru March 17, 2022 Software No Comments

    Google Maps has transformed the way we see our world. There’s no doubt about it. If you’re using Google Maps in Satellite View, you’re given a close-up, bird’s eye view of virtually every location on planet Earth.

    However, you may be wondering how often these Satellite images update. In fact, you may often notice outdated views or location details that are not quite accurate. Regardless if you’re using Google Earth or Google Maps, they pull their data from the same sources.

    Note: At no extra cost to you, we may earn a commission for purchases using our links. Learn more.

    How Often Does Google Maps Update Satellite Images?

    Typically, Google’s satellite image database updates constantly – 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. However, you won’t usually see live changes or updates reflect on a regular basis. There may be a delay of months, or often times, years before the satellite images reflect exactly what the location looks like in reality.

    Updates to Google Maps satellite images happen more frequently in highly populated areas. According to the Google Maps blog, the answer depends on where you live. For example, big cities like Philadelphia, Seattle, Tampa or Boston will have updates that occur weekly. Conversely, rural locations may only see an update once every 1-3+ years.

    Ultimately, you’re unable to fully predict when a certain Satellite View will change. However, you can utilize a few different methods to figure out when a certain location was last updated.

    Determining When a Google Maps “Satellite Image” Was Taken

    Using Google Earth, you’re able to determine approximately when the current satellite image was taken. First, head over to Google Earth and wait for it to load.

    Once you see the World view, zoom in on anywhere or type a location in the search bar. Zoom in close enough for the “Imagery date” to appear in the bottom toolbar. It will be towards the left side near the Google logo and the percentage loaded icon. See the screenshot below.

    This method will only work on Google Earth; Google Maps Satellite View won’t have the exact same interface. Additionally, it’ll only work if you’re zoomed in close enough. Once you’re zoomed in, the date should appear.

    Keep in mind, this date will change based on where your cursor is located. It may give you a precise date, or it may give you a broad date range. Either way, it’s useful for pinpointing a general range regarding the last time a specific area’s Satellite images were taken.

    Get Notified When a Google Maps Satellite Image Updates

    In the past, Google users were once able to use the “Follow Your World” tool. This tool allowed Google to notify you via email once a certain Satellite View updated. You could use this tool to setup automatic alerts every time Google updated a specific location that you determined. Ultimately, this was a fantastic method if you were interested in tracking updates or simply seeing geographical or metropolitan changes over the course of time.

    Unfortunately, as of September 2019, Google Earth announced that the Follow Your World tool will shutdown on September 30th. Since then, there hasn’t been anything similar available to notify you when a satellite image updated.

    Since the retirement of the Follow Your World tool, Google has yet to replace it or give access to anything similar. They cited privacy concerns with this tool, which is why it’s no longer available; to the public, at least. It’s a shame, because this was such a useful way to determine updates.

    Determining When a Google Maps “Street View” Image Was Taken

    The Street View in Google Maps is another close-up view of the world around us. Just like satellite images, the images taken for Street View are updated regularly, but not on a consistent basis. These images typically have a delay of 1-3 years; sometimes more, sometimes less. To determine when a Google Maps Street View image was taken, it’s very simple.

    First, head over to Google Maps on your favorite web browser. Either zoom-in on a desired location or search for a place in the search bar. Once you go into street view, an “Image capture” will appear in the bottom right corner of your screen. See the screenshot below.

    Make sure you’re using a desktop computer or laptop; the date does not display on the mobile version of Google Maps.

    When Will Google Maps “Street View” Update?

    As with Satellite View, Google does not release a specific schedule for when and where Street View will update. However, they give you a much better idea on where they will be collecting street view next. All you need to do is head on over to the Google Street View Homepage.

    Scroll down beneath the display of rotating images and you’ll see a section titled “Where Google is collecting Street View next.” This tool will give you a broad insight on where the Street View car or trekker will be next.

    Source : nerdtechy.com

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