Virtual Earth goes 3D, a more real Second Life coming??

November 7, 2006

Microsoft have launched a 3D rendering of 15 cities in their Virtual Earth/Local Live mapping product this week. It looks really good and it’s really interesting to see Microsoft going down this route with what up to now has been a purely functional application.

With Microsoft at the helm this could get really interesting. They’ve placed billboard advertising in some areas which has been developed by an in-game advertising firm called Massive who Microsoft bought this year. The advertising has been taken up by some large corps (Nissan for example). The fact that an in-game advertiser has created this could point to developments to make this 3D mapping project progress into a really immersive way to geo-navigate the world online with advertising in the mix as well.

The new 3D platform is open to developers as well so if it gets a lot of interest we could see some great ideas come from this. I’d love to see a ‘real world’ kind of Second Life emerge in the future! With Microsoft and Massive involved could we see Virtual Earth being integrated into a game for XBox Live?

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