Last month, I asked whether Google would start to play favorites with respect to designing and upgrading their products now that the Android phone was out. Today, I learn that Google Earth for iPhone became available yesterday as a free application from the App Store. There is no Android version, yet.
The Google team seems very excited about putting the world in your pocket via the iPhone. A quick tour of the application shows it augments the native Google Maps application that comes with every iPhone and iPod touch. An accelerometer based trick allows you to tilt the phone to get a 3D view, panning up or down as you tilt. It’s quite a neat trick. A bare bones search function is also available, though in my test the very same results were brought up in Maps.
One might conclude something this exciting for Google might have been saved or delayed until the Android version was ready or even introduce it to the iPhone after the Android version. But Google seems to be driving it all forward, regardless of platform.
Couple that info with what we are seeing in the iPhone 2.2 build: major Google Maps enhancements and you can only conclude that Google isn’t playing favorites. In the 2.2, Google is bringing killer advancements like street view, alternate transit directions, location sharing and my favorite: movable map pins allowing route changes on the fly.
It seems clear to me that Google will continue improving and localizing their applications for the iPhone as well as their own Android OS, which is great news for every iPhone and iPod touch owner as their products are often go-to options for many of us.