Google gives up on Street View in Germany

Google Street View stepping down in Germany
Google Street View stepping down in Germany

Google has confirmed it won't be taking any more pictures with its Street View cars in Germany, despite winning a recent court case to allow it to continue doing so.

The search giant came under increasing pressure with its image capture service in the 20 large German cities it recorded, and it seems the negative PR the offering has received has caused Google to give in:

"Our business priority is to use our Google cars to collect data such as street names and road signs to improve our basic maps for our users in a similar way that other mapping companies do," a spokesperson told Search Engine Land.

Update: We've spoken to Google, and it turns out this isn't a new statement, as it was announced in Germany all the way back in January. But in better news, the company has confirmed it won't be affecting the UK's Street View plans.

Screeching to a halt

The current crop of photos will remain, but no more new snaps will be recorded from the Google cars patrolling the streets.

Google has remained resolute in its defence of Street View in Germany, claiming that while nearly 250,000 users have requested their homes or businesses be blurred from view, this represents only three per cent of the population covered.

The brand is facing similar criticism in a number of other territories, but there's no information on whether the Street View program will cease there too.

From Search Engine Land via Mashable

Gareth Beavis
Formerly Global Editor in Chief

Gareth has been part of the consumer technology world in a career spanning three decades. He started life as a staff writer on the fledgling TechRadar, and has grown with the site (primarily as phones, tablets and wearables editor) until becoming Global Editor in Chief in 2018. Gareth has written over 4,000 articles for TechRadar, has contributed expert insight to a number of other publications, chaired panels on zeitgeist technologies, presented at the Gadget Show Live as well as representing the brand on TV and radio for multiple channels including Sky, BBC, ITV and Al-Jazeera. Passionate about fitness, he can bore anyone rigid about stress management, sleep tracking, heart rate variance as well as bemoaning something about the latest iPhone, Galaxy or OLED TV.