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Google Street View in Hawaii?

April 17th, 2009 by Ryan Ozawa · 18 Comments · Hawaii, Technology, The Web

Photo by Joe SegalGoogle Street View is an immensely popular, though sometimes controversial, feature of its mapping products (like Google Maps and Google Earth). It allows you to go beyond “zooming in” on a map or aerial photo and get a driver’s eye view of cities and neighborhoods. It’s available all across the U.S., Japan, Australia and New Zealand, and recently, the United Kingdom and the Netherlands.

But, as Google enthusiasts and map users in the islands are well aware (and as the Wikipedia entry states matter-of-factly), “The only state as of this date that does not have coverage is Hawaii.

Well, that may change soon. Local geek Joe Segal says he spotted the Google Street View camera car in Honolulu. He writes on TechHui:

I was driving home from work yesterday when I saw this car ahead of me with this huge apparatus on the roof. I sped up to take a better look. When I saw the sticker on the side “Google!” I realized it must be the Google Street View Camera Car! I quickly whipped out my cheapo cell phone camera and snapped a pic. I wonder how long until they drive every road in town and we see it on Google Maps?

Someone quickly replied, “Oh man, I better go clean up my front yard, quick!”

Update: It looks like the same Google Street View car was spotted on Wednesday by local Twitter user @docrock. He got a much closer look in the Kahala Mall parking lot. Thanks, Derek!

Update 2: Also on Wednesday, renown internet entrepreneur and Hawaii resident Pierre Omidyar tweeted about being photographed by the Google Street View car: “Dang it, I just got passed by a Google camera car, riding my scooter, on my own block! Now I’m going to be in Google Maps. That’s not cool.” Known by most as the founder of eBay, Omidyar prefers to keep a low profile. Thanks, Bob!

Update 2: Google Street View imagery in Hawaii is now live.

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18 Comments so far ↓

  • Joe

    I wonder how long its been on the island?

  • Cindy

    Another well known service, BLACKBERRY maps application doesn’t even pan to Hawaii. How lame is that? I have sent in a complaint, or software comment, and I got an email saying they’ll look into it… :P

  • joe

    Wow the founder of Ebay drives a scooter around?

  • Lisa

    Oh!! I saw that last week too! Not close enough to see the Google sticker- I think I was a couple cars behind- but I definitely saw that car with the camera and wondered what the heck it was.

  • eric

    I SAW IT TOO TODAY!!!..it was parked in ala moana by old navy..california plates

  • Nocturnal

    Two of my coworkers spotted it outside of KHON driving around and they also got some video footage of it.

  • Adam

    It’s so funny….to think that you folks act like
    This is something new. Get with the program
    And stop acting as if it’s the end of the world.
    Hillarous an so what I you’re riding a damn scooter
    And who you are, 100% of the time most people
    Won’t even care who you are!!!

  • Lester S.

    Just saw the camera car yesterday around 4:30pm headed westbound on Kapiolani Blvd near Keeaumoku.

  • Mistress09

    Hi I’m a live on Maui and I just saw a google camera car on the highway to Lahaina.

  • Kris

    @Mistress09, cool. Someone else snapped a photo of a Google Street View car in Makawao a few days later.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/luckycomehawaii/3845557951/in/pool-13946339@N00

    If Google Street View went along the road to Hana or up to the summit at Haleakala, that’d be pretty sweet.

  • Hana Driver

    “If Google Street View went along the road to Hana or up to the summit at Haleakala, that’d be pretty sweet.”

    We spotted a Google Street View Car about halfway through the Road to Hana at about 9:30 this morning. We didn’t have a camera but we did wave the car down and had a little chat with the driver (she didn’t seem to be interest in her job).

  • dev Monkey

    My wife and I were visiting Maui just recently and the camera past us by while waiting to fill up the car at the gas station in Paia. (sept 9th i believe)

    I’m wondering how long it takes google to process the images and post them. Like to see if we’re in the final cut ;-)

  • cheekybob

    they should get dog the bounty hunter on it hes got to be in it cause hes the main man in honolulu. cheekybob fae dundee.

  • smaclala

    i saw it two times on the same day! in maui a few weeks ago!

    mentioning dog the bounty hunter i saw him in the same place where i was the first time i saw the car! it was at a funeral…

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  • Justin Sage

    My wife and I saw a Google car in Hilo. The camera was not operating, but was laid back on the roof with a tarp covering it. It apparently pivots up and snaps into position. There was also a laptop in the passenger side of the car. Should be interesting!

  • Basit Mustafa

    Saw it on Haleakala in Maui on Crater Rd in late April…still waiting for the imagery to be published!

    Might see us in our Red Ford Fusion rental!

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