Google just released street views in SF. You can see the street corners of the city as if you were actually there. That’s kinda amazing. At this point, they have enough man power to go and scour a city I suppose…or they bought this information from another company (or the whole company itself) that was doing this. I like how the street arrows tell you which way is north when you’re panning around.
I think the potential for this is in augmented reality for mobile devices. I would not be surprised if Google either released a mobile phone or a mobile phone application that allowed you to do the panning in real-time, all the while telling you which way is north, as well as where the nearest gas-station/food/store is.
What I think they’ll miss is the potential for social information such as, where your friends are all gathering. I’d chalk it up to Loopt or Facebook to see the potential for that.