Remember the video of the 3D Google-Earth like application for Java-enabled mobile phone posted a few days ago? Swedish mobile gadget news site mobil confirms it’s of Swedish company Wayfinder‘s mobile app Wayfinder Earth, whose beta is due to be released May 2.
The news site reports that the application will allow you to type in a place name and then zoom in to it, and will also show restaurants, hotels, etc. It also says the free application is part of a strategy by Wayfinder to attract more users, who would then be enticed into buying services directly through the app.
All this puts Wayfinder into something of a competitive position with Google’s recently announced Google Maps Mobile. Google’s product is definitely 2D, as the working online demo shows. Also, it uses the same technique as with Maps, where you zoom in to predefined levels, and then scroll across different map tiles.
Wayfinder Earth is seen using a two-tiered vector-based solution: A Google Earth-like 3D interface for further out, and a 2D interface when zoomed closer in. The video shows smooth zooming at all levels, with the maps as vector data downloaded and rendered on the phone.