How I love competition. Windows Live Spaces announces that Virtual Earth now has all of Italy in high resolution, beating Google to the punch. No doubt, this is a direct result of the deal with Norway’s Blom (blogged here) a company that has quite an inventory of Italy imagery (and which provided the bird’s eye views over several Italians cities released last week.)
Something caught my eye: The third-party imagery used by Microsoft for Virtual Earth does not come with copyright statements from contributing companies — all it says is “© 2006 Microsoft Corporation”. I wonder if this costs a lot more? Remember, too that the Blom agreement allowed for its imagery to be used at work — there is no constraint on using Microsoft’s Virtual Earth 3D at the office. I’m guessing that Microsoft is paying handsomely for all this “smoothness”.
With Google’s purchase of Endoxon yesterday, it really seems like the battle for Europe is heating up between these two giants.