Google has officially launched its Street View of Nigeria’s commercial hub, Lagos, and the tech giant is looking to make the feature available across the country soon. The company launched the new service at the Google for Nigeria event which took place in Lagos last Thursday (27 July) in the presence of its CEO, Sundar Pichai.
Street view is a feature on Google Maps that lets you view panoramic images of streets and it improves the address search experience, allowing users to see at street level what a city looks like and also go on a tour without leaving their desk.
“Today we’re launching Lagos on Street View, with 10,000 kilometres of imagery, including the most important historic roads in the city. You can virtually drive along the Carter Bridge to the National Stadium or across the Eko Bridge, down to the Marina—all on your smartphone,” said the Country Manager of Google Nigeria, Juliet Ehimuan-Chiazor, at event.
Google has also announced faster web search results for people with 2G connections and a lower bandwidth version of YouTube.
“When you’re on a 2G-like connection or using a low storage device, pages can take a long time to load. We previously launched a feature that streamlines search results so they load with less data and at high speed. Today we’re extending that feature to streamline websites you reach from search results, so that they load with 90 per cent less data and five times faster, even on low storage devices”, she told the capacity audience at the Google for Nigeria event.
Digital skills for 10 million Africans
By 2034, Ms Ehimuan-Chiazor predicted that Africa would have the world’s largest working-age population of 1.1 billion yet only 3 to 4 million jobs are created annually. As an intervention, she noted that there was an urgent need to create opportunities for the millions of people on the continent who are creative, smart and driven to succeed. The internet and technology as a whole, she explained offered great opportunities for creating jobs, growing businesses and boosting economies.
“Last year we set out to help bridge the digital skills gap in Africa when we pledged to train one million young people in the region—and we’ve exceeded this target. Now we’re expanding this program, and committing to prepare another 10 million people for jobs of the future in the next five years. We’ll also be providing mobile developer training to 100,000 Africans to develop world-class apps, with an initial focus on Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa. “