While much could be said about Android users and their general distaste for all things Apple, Google sure doesn’t feel the same way. Today, Google has launched their “Photo Sphere Camera” app in the iTunes App Store and gives iPhone users the ability to capture full 360-degree panorama images (in all directions).
Before anyone gets up in arms over Google giving iOS users this at one exclusive Android feature move, keep in mind Google doesn’t see iOS users as the competition, but as another dollar sign, targeting them with their own apps and services (same with Android users). And in an effort to continue building out photo spheres on Maps, bringing iPhone users into the fold makes perfect sense. In fact, in order to share photo spheres with friends and family, they’ll first need to be uploaded publicly to a Google Maps’ “Views” profile. After that, they’ll await approval before showing up on Google Maps for the world to see.
While your first instinct is to take a photo sphere of your current surroundings, Google encourages new Photo Sphere users to get out capture outdoor environments or public places — not just the inside of your house (or else everyone can easily find out where you live). This will help increase the value of Maps and others as they travel whether it’s in person, or from the comfort of their couch.
I guess the only question left is what next great Android feature will Google bring to iOS users next? We also can’t help but wonder if Google’s open embrace of iOS will negatively affect the amount of Android users who may be enticed by Apple’s hardware?