Panoramio Hits 1 Million Geolocated Photos
Eduardo Manchon of Panoramio, the very cool geophotography site (another coinage?), sends news that Panoramio recently saw the one-millionth geolocated photo uploaded to the service. [Also reported in Ogle Earth.] What’s so cool about that, besides the fact that it’s a damn big number even for a service that started in October 2005? Well, if you were reading 3pointD last December, you already know that Panoramio, then “still a small site,” according to Eduardo, has been a default layer in Google Earth for the last three months. That means that if you upload a geolocated photo to Panoramio, it will appear on everyone’s Google Earth if they have the Panoramio layer turned on (which it is by default). The question then is, why geotag your photos on Flickr when you can just have them stuck right into Google Earth?
The image above shows all the Panoramia photos (the little blue crosses) that have been taken near the Burj al-Arab hotel in Dubai (which is a photo-worthy spot, I can tell you). Click on a cross and up pops the photo. Nice, right? (I can’t get a screenshot of GE with a photo open, unfortunately.) One of my Twitter friends is always geotagging his Flickr photos, but as far as I can tell all this does is let someone locate the photo they’re viewing, or search on coordinates to find photos. It’s quite possible there’s a mashup out there that automatically gathers all the photos that have been taken and geotagged at or near a particular location, of course. Still, that’s not the same as being a default layer on Google Earth. (And I actually had the same experience as Duncan Riley when I tried to geotag some Flickr photos I’d taken in Jordan: impossible).
Panoramio has seen a 50-fold multiplication of traffic since being made a default layer, Eduardo tells me, and had 4 million unique visitors in February. Flickr, of course, is much more than a photo-management site and is an exemplar of Web 2.0 design; I’m hardly arguing that people abandon it in favor of Panoramio (I certainly don’t plan to). But as a 3pointD app, Panoramio looks like it’s making great strides. At any rate, congrats to Eduardo and co. for hitting the one-million mark. We look forward to seeing more of them around the globe.