Google is launching Version 5.2 of its Google Earth and paid professional Google Earth Pro applications, adding an integrated Web browser and support for Apple's iPad tablet, which early testers are raving about. Google Earth 5.2 sports an embedded Web browser through which users can search the Web instead of opening it in a full Web page. The app also lets users view elevation, speed and other information as a graph layer in Google Earth.
Google June 14 began launching the latest version of its Google Earth
professional Google Earth Pro applications, adding an integrated Web browser,
support for Apple's iPad tablet and other utilities.
Downloaded by more than 700 million people around the world, Google Earth is
a free desktop application that lets users search for satellite images of maps,
terrain and buildings, from the depths of the oceans to the reaches of outer
While the product has been spruced up a few times to include more ocean views
and satellite images of the moon,
the application was due for an
Google Earth 5.2, which is rolling out gradually this week, sports an embedded
Web browser to let users search the Web without clicking on a link to open it
in a full Web page. Now when users click the link, the browser pane appears on
See what the browser pane looks like in this blog post,
along with pictures of the other new features.
The Google Earth team also added the ability to view elevation, speed and
other information as a graph layer in Google Earth.
With the Earth 5.0 upgrade
in January 2009, Google began letting
users connect GPS devices to Google Earth to
import their hiking, running, biking, skiing and sailing paths.
Google Earth 5.2 lets users connect a Garmin or other GPS
device to upload their tracks and select "View Elevation Profile"
from the menu. This will call up the elevation and speed graphs.
Previously, users viewed their GPS tracks
as lines or points on the map. Now, when they're done, hikers and cyclists can
click on the time animation button to play back the track.
Users can even move the time slider to animate time and retrace a trip, and
show multiple tracks at the same time.
"Google Earth will draw an icon so that it is properly positioned for
the given time that you are viewing," explained Dan Barcay,
a Google Earth software engineer, in a
blog post. "As you move through time, the icon will animate along your
path. You can also select a window of time, which will highlight the
corresponding section of your trip."
See this in action in this video.
Also, several bloggers report that Google Earth 5.2 works well on an iPad, the
tablet PC that Apple has shipped more than 2 million units of in two months. Search
featured screenshots here,
raved about the application here.
Finally, Google Earth Pro 5.2, which lets engineers, researchers and others pay
fees to see geographic data sets, brings several new capabilities.
These include new layers for parcel, demographics and traffic, automated
super-overlays for fat image files, auto-regioning of large data sets, improved
GIS (geographic information systems) import
and support for MGRS (Military Grid Reference System) grids.
The company provided more info about Google Earth Pro 5.2 here
and a demo video here.