StreetView is great but it's so last year – as in the footage taken for it is nearly a year old. Google knows this and that is why the search giant has launched a new Webcams layer for its Maps service.
Click on the Webcam option in Google Maps (if you can't see it, then just type 'webcam into the Maps' search bar) and a plethora of square boxes will appear on your map.
If you select any one of these you will get a recent image from that particular webcam. In our short test, however, the Webcam option only looks to be available for maps in the US.
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According to TechCrunch, the layer gets its feeds from Webcams.travel, so they are constantly updated. Instead of seeing moving footage, however, all you will get is a still image of the place you clicked on.
The move by Google is a good one. StreetView recently launched in the UK and while it is a superb service for the curious among us, the images are out of date, with shops that have been a victim of the credit crunch, like Woolworths, still up and running.
Once the Webcam service is rolled out to the UK, it will be a great way to check traffic and the like before setting off on your journey.