Software giant Google on Tuesday added panoramic views of the world's great coral reefs to its Streetview service on the maps application, allowing internet users to experience a virtual dive in the seas.
Reuters Google Adds world’s Great Coral Reef Panorama to StreetView
"Today we're adding the very first underwater panoramic images to Google Maps, the next step in our quest to provide people with the most comprehensive, accurate and usable map of the world," Brian McClendon, vice president of Google Maps and Google Earth, said on the Google Lat Long Blog.
This is the first time that Google added underwater images to its Streetview map. The panoramic images were gathered by Catlin Seaview Survey, a project gathering the information about the coral reef by using a special tablet-operated underwater camera.
Australia's Great Barrier Reef, Lady Elliot Island and Wilson Island are some of the locations included in the panoramic views of the coral reef.
"With these vibrant and stunning photos you don't have to be a scuba diver-or even know how to swim-to explore and experience six of the ocean's most incredible living coral reefs. Now, anyone can become the next virtual Jacques Cousteau and dive with sea turtles, fish and manta rays in Australia, the Philippines and Hawaii," McClendon added.
The images have been published in seven continents.
"We've published images in seven continents, down the Amazon and in the Arctic," said Google Oceans Program manager Jenifer Austin Foulkes.