[T]hose interested in exploring the wonder of Angkor don’t need to make a trek to Southeast Asia—and risk contributing to the damage of the site—to enjoy what the ruins have to offer. For the first time ever, Google Maps is granting users an up-close view of Angkor, through Google’s Street View project.
The move is an extension of Google Maps’ mission to make sure that its maps are the most accurate, comprehensive and useful available to users. While to most people, this might materialize in the form of directions—using Google Maps to get you from Point A to Point B— the company doesn’t see this as the limit for the product’s technology.
“Increasingly, if you look at the amount of power we have in our cellphones, the ability for those phones to know your location and customize an experience around you, they are becoming fairly good at making sure that people are able to explore the world around them,” says Manik Gupta, Google Maps Product Manager. “We want to make sure that we have the ability to share all these places with users all over the world.”