Tuesday, December 02, 2008

From Smaps to Google Maps

Paper street maps could become a thing of the past for TradeMe property and travel shoppers. The New Zealand internet giant has canned its former mapping software, Smaps and replaced it with Google Maps.

The switch lets users of TradeMe Property and its travel accommodation site Travelbug make the most of Google's new Street View programme, released in New Zealand today.

Street View allows people to see photos of streets and surrounding areas over the internet. TradeMe spokesman Mike O'Donnell said an inability to keep up with Google's innovations meant it was pragmatic to make the switch.

"The incorporation of Google's Street View should make house or holiday hunting easier," he said. "Given we operate the most visited real estate website in New Zealand, there's an obligation on us to use the best mapping technology. "Cool stuff like Street View [is] a good example of technology that empowers consumers."

Google's Street View is available for all 94,000 listings on TradeMe Property. Rival realestate.co.nz is also using Google's Street View on about half of its 80,000 residential and lifestyle listings.


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