Another big day for Virtual Earth in the portal space. Granted, it's our own search portals but it's great to see the platform getting more use and exposure worldwide. Live Search Maps China has expanded it's offering (just in time for the Olympics). Live Search Maps Australia just launched (shortly after we added Bird's Eye coverage for Australia).
The Live Search Maps China site (or DITU) has the following additions and improvements:
- Real-time Traffic in Beijing
- Send-to-Mobile for free for local search and transit routing result
- Transit data refresh for existing 11 cities including 3 new subway in Beijing (No.10, Airport and Olympic).
- Expanded coverage from 11 to 31 cities.
- Geocoding and Local Search
- Data refresh for existing 114 cities including Olympic Venues.
- Support city and county name geocoding for areas outside of 114-city coverage.
- Olympic query relevance improvement
- Local search category refinement
- Map refresh for 10 existing major cities including Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou etc.
- Expanded tile coverage for 30 more cities, totally 289 cities now.
The Live Search Maps Australia site is new and includes data from Virtual Earth, NineMSN and Yellow (Pages). If you get redirected to Live Search Maps (US) you can access the Australian site via Ninemsn.com.au, click "maps" above the search box and search for an Australian city or place.
Oddly, I couldn't find "vegemite" in "Sydney" so I'm starting to think this sandwich that Men At Work sang about doesn't exist. I might be down under for Tech Ed Australia in September to find out for myself. Stay tuned.