During a press conference at its San Francisco, CA offices, Google Inc. confirmed that it would be deploying a small number of planes equipped with cameras as it attempts to create a photo-based, 3D map of the world.
The company refused to specify which cities the planes will be flying above, but it aims to release three-dimensional maps of at least some of these cities before the year is out.
Google did, however, give attendees a demonstration of a 3D map of San Francisco, where a user can navigate around an aerial view of the region.
In terms of any potential privacy concerns, Google's Head of Engineering for the maps project, Brian McClendon, only noted that said issues are similar to those faced by anyone that partakes in aerial imagery projects.
The 3D city maps will eventually be featured as part of the mobile device version of Google Earth.
Google already sends camera-equipped cars onto the roads in order to capture images for its Street View application.