Google Earth

Can you get real-time imagery in Google Earth?

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January 10, 2011 10:44PM

Imagery and photos including Street view photos in Google Earth (or Google Maps) may appear real-time (or live) but it is NOT and often takes months of post processing before new imagery becomes available on Google Earth/Maps.

This is one reason why you usually do not find any imagery younger than about 6 months in Google Earth/Maps. Updates usually happen about every 2-3 weeks and only to particular areas not the entire globe all at once.

While the imagery is not real-time, Google is making some layers such as traffic and the cloud weather layer available near real-time and refreshed every few hours.

There is also a new webcam layer integrated into Google Earth that can show "live" scenes at selected locations.

Also, there are third party data feeds such as real-time flight tracking available.