Google Earth on mobile just got cosmically cooler

Google Earth on mobile just got cosmically cooler thumbnail
Finally, stars!
Finally, stars!

Image: Stan Schroeder/Google Earth/mashable

By Stan Schroeder

You’re going to want to waste a few minutes hours playing with the new Google Earth mobile app. 

The most recent version of the app shows stars in the background when you zoom out. And since you can view from 30,000 miles above the planet, and then rotate Earth to see the stars and the galaxies in the background, it’s pretty friggin’ cool. 

For some reason, Google’s official post announcing the feature is gone, but the functionality is there (update: the post is now live, here). Check out an image taken on my iPhone 11 Pro Max and the latest version of Google Earth for iOS, below. 



Image: Stan Schroeder/Google Earth/Mashable

The space imagery was captured by the European Southern Observatory and, while not exactly in crazy-high resolution, it’s still nice to look at. To make the imagery even cooler-looking, go to the app’s Settings (via the hamburger menu in the top left) and set rendering quality to highest. Then go back a step, hit Map Style and turn on the Animated Clouds layer. Finally, note that you can zoom a little farther out in landscape mode. 

Note that Google Earth for the web, as well as the Google Earth Pro desktop app, had this functionality for a while, but the mobile app didn’t have it until now. Happy navigating!

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