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Google Maps Basemap


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  •  I would like to see the Google basemaps integrated  into the ArcMap suite of products similar to Bing. It would be nice to have Google maps as an option as a basemap for ArcGIS Online and to easily load it into my desktop applications.

    I have been told by some of the ESRI Staff that the Google coloring scheme does not make for a good basemap.  I find that most people are actually more familiar and comfortable using a Google map. One of the reasons I do not use the other map options, if I can help it, is because I want my users to already know what they are looking at and not have to guess "Is that a highway or a freeway?"

    Each of the major mapping sites such as Google, Bing, Open Street Map and ArcGIS have their strengths. They all seem to update their data at different rates for different areas. One site may update the imagery this year and not do it again for two or three more years. Meanwhile other sites may have updated more recently. It would be nice to have Google as another option if they have better data. I know ArcGIS has a community basemap program out there so that I can upload tiles to enhance the basemap for an area but that takes time that I don't have.

    In all I just want to have Google maps be another option as a basemap for my desktop and web applications

    Tags :
     Google Maps, Bing, Desktop, basemap
    Posted by   smcshinsky  to ArcGIS DesktopArcGIS OnlineArcGIS Desktop Extensions Oct 28, 2010

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Comments (62)

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Apr 26, 2015
ESRI! Can we request an update on this please? What is the status of this request for Google Maps in ArcGIS Destop?

Mar 27, 2015
Please allow Google Maps to be used in Desktop 10.x. It would be really helpful for my needs.

Nov 5, 2014
oh.. cmon please bing is sucks!!!

Sep 10, 2014
Please implement this!

Jul 21, 2014
Newer Aerial image and better Resolution  -- please add Google Earth

May 28, 2014
That would be absolutely fantastic. Would save me so much time and effort

May 12, 2014
Google has the newest Imagery for our area and the quality seems to be higher as well.

May 7, 2014
the just released version of Arc2Earth now serves Google Basemaps as native MapServers to ArcMap. Plus we added Streetview and ObliqueMaps as dockable windows (with your data displayed over them)

more info here:

May 1, 2014
Users want this.  Make it an Extension, and sell it.  

Split the money with Google.  EVERYONE WINS.  

Lots of people will buy it.  We want Google street map basemap, Google imagery, and perhaps even Street View and maybe even Google obliques a la Pictometry.  People would pay a LOT for this, especially those last two.  Military, federal and state users, large multinationalis, definitely. I mean if you're buying ArcGIS, you can afford to buy an extension usually, especially one this useful!  Controls to adjust Google basemap colors via their API would be icing on the cake.

Let's keep promoting this everyone, sometimes users have to "help" ESRI with market focus!

May 1, 2014
It seems odd to me when we got other online basemap/imagery resources to add to ArcMap dataview how come google map/imagery has not been implemented yet? isn't already out there for everyone to be used for free?

Apr 3, 2014
Yes, it is better.  Please add google maps to basemap gallery.

Apr 3, 2014
Been waiting for YEARS for this...

Mar 25, 2014
All the imagery from World Imagery and Bing is now old (2010). Google Earth has much newer aerials for many areas. Also, the resolution is better for many areas. Please consider!!!!! We do a lot of bio work, so need newer aerials.

Feb 12, 2014
Deferred?, WTF?

Feb 5, 2014
Definitely needed

Jan 21, 2014
It would sell ur ArcGis like wildfire do it. 

Jan 2, 2014
Google has the recent aerials for our region and would be a great help for many of our region's projects. Addition of this feature would be greatly appreciated.

Dec 12, 2013
Highly requested!

Dec 3, 2013
I would love to be able to use Google imagery with our maps. Google has more up to date imagery than we do.

Oct 21, 2013
Google has the newest imagery for our area. Come on Big Dog!

Oct 7, 2013
Google has just published current satellite imagery for the Coos Bay, Oregon area that is almost 3 years newer. The world imagery available in ArcGIS for the Southern Oregon Coast is from 2010 while Google is now utilizing imagery from May of 2013. I would think since they are both Digital Glode, they would both be available through ESRI.

Sep 11, 2013
ESRI, cmon man!

Aug 18, 2013
I guess that this extension is not availlable as Esri can't make money with it...

Aug 15, 2013
Now that Bing requires seperate licensing in 10.2, could we not get that option for Google maps?  Many AOIs in Canada (northern BC in particular) are covered better with Google imagery than with Bing.

May 30, 2013
ArcGIS as a powerful is not very good with images for most part of Africa. Eventhough, google is no better with quality, google thus current images for Africa.
Being able to use google maps in ArcGIS will strengthen ArcGIS in regions where images are a clear challenge.

Apr 18, 2013
Arc2Earth Data Services allows you to view Google data directly in ArcMap. It costs money but it's the only legal way to use Google data in ArcGIS (note - there are no additionaly license fees for Google either, it is included in the base Arc2Earth subscription)

Feb 14, 2013
Why will ESRI will not include Google as a partner? Or why does Google not want to partner?

For those wishing to have killer ortho imagery BING actually has 1 foot (30 cm) resolution for the USA and Western Europe. This of course is only for their Enterprise clients so it would be nice for ESRI to negotiate something to have this available to users.

Jan 30, 2013
Google Maps (aerials) would be a GREAT additon to my mapping initiatives.  Google has updated the aerias for my area (Central Oklahoma) in the last few months and they are great quality.  Bing aerials are over two years old and the World Imagery data is over three years old.

I wish people would not make these blanket statements like, "Bing is better for United States, but Google is superior for the rest of the world" because that is just not true for many areas.

With the recent news that Bing maps will no longer be available for free it would be nice to have some other options.  PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE work out a deal with Google to make these available in ArcGIS.

Jan 4, 2013
I would like to see Google as an option not because of superior images, which can be argued both ways depending on your location, but simply for the date and timing of the imagery.

In my area of Pennsylvania, both Bing and Google supply far superior imagery than NAIP.  However,  Bing's imagery was taken during August (leaf-on) 2011, while Google's was taken during April (leaf-off) 2012.  Google's is newer, leaf-off, and allows me to digitize roads better than leaf on.  Given the option to pull one or the other based on needs would be most helpful.

Jan 3, 2013
The World Imagery map provided by Esri now has 30cm imagery for the entire US and 60cm imagery for much of Europe.

DigitlalGlobe Imagery for the United States and Western Europe Added to the World Imagery Map

World Imagery Map

Dec 4, 2012
At this time we do not have any plans of including Google Maps in a future release of ArcGIS.

Nov 1, 2012
Bing is better for United States, but Google is superior for the rest of the world.

Oct 22, 2012
Google maps is clrearer for my area.

Oct 13, 2012
I would like to see google maps in Arcmap 10.1 just like bing maps. Thank you.

Oct 11, 2012
Very much looking forward to having Google maps as an option for ArcGIS 10.1 desktop

Sep 12, 2012
I would like to have Google Maps as another alternative to the Bing and World Imagery. They seem to update their aerials more often than some of the other services.

The opportunity to compare several data with different qualities would be a great help in daily GIS-work!

Sep 10, 2012
Yes, our Island of Tasmania (Australia) is a bit sketchy with both Google and Bing. In some parts Bing has better high resolution and in other parts Google has high resolution. The option to have both would solve our problems!

Jul 10, 2012
I would really like to be able to use some of the new arcgis server javascript api features but I can't use bing for my basemap as it doesn't have very good spatial resolution in our areas of interest (mostly in the middle east)

Jun 21, 2012
Bing Map has a date of 2010....we are forced to export layers to kmz to import into google earth just to make sure we can use the most recent aerials available.  Bing is too out of date.  GIS is only as powerful as the data provided and outdated data is unreliable.

Jun 12, 2012
Google has better cartography, and they update their imagery more often than Bing. Plus, StreetView is an awesome tool and would compliment ArcGIS desktop/server applications immensely. Thank you.

Jun 5, 2012
Alternate imagery sources are key to our mapping needs.  Definately an idea we hope ESRI will provide.


May 2, 2012
I agree. Variety is the spice of life.

Mar 2, 2012
I too would like to see Google Maps as an option in ArcGIS.

Feb 28, 2012
I agree with all the previous comments.  I am working on a thesis which requires me to get imagery from remote regions where Bing has poor imagery.  Due to the sensitive nature of imagery in these regions, and the expense of commercial imagery, I need free imagery.  Google is the only carrier with free imagery of high enough quality to be of use.  

Feb 1, 2012
Agreed with Google Maps I can get high quality images over the last ten years and only the 1945 image is of lower resolution (five different images). Bing by comparison only gives me low resolution images of my area, and at least 12 years old.

Jan 20, 2012
AMEN! Google is good. bring it on! also add Google STREETVIEW! 

Jan 13, 2012
ehayes - that depends what area you are looking. in urban areas google may have high-res from a vendor, but in rural areas just uses NAIP imagery. and i dont know what you mean by more appealing to the eye, but thats a matter of opinion and has nothing to do with how recent the imagery is.

Jan 11, 2012

Users should be aware that intellectual property rights in data created by using Google are compromised. Google Terms of Service - (see paragraph 11.1 - "By submitting, posting or displaying the content you give Google a perpetual, irrevocable, worldwide, royalty-free, and non-exclusive licence to reproduce, adapt, modify, translate, publish, publicly perform, publicly display and distribute any Content which you submit, post or display on or through, the Services.")


Users in the UK who are members of the Public Sector Mapping Agreement (PSMA) will need to exercise caution when working with Google if they are also using Ordnance Survey (OS) ‘Licensed Data’ because there are mutually incompatible licence terms between OS and Google which could have serious legal consequences.


Jan 9, 2012
Bing maps are ok, but Google maps have more up-to-date aerials and are much more appealing to the eye.

Dec 27, 2011
It would be nice to have this as an option but I think people use google maps only because they aren't familiar with other options. Google maps is now a household name, just like Apple. Bing has great imagery in many areas and has been investing big time in new imagery. I live in very rural Michigan and the Bing imagery is 12" flown this past summer by DigitalGlobe. In my area, Google is still using 2005 NAIP. In response to masmith: Bing has great imagery outside of urban areas. They are buying it from DigitalGlobe, so it all depends where digitalglobe is collecting.

Dec 8, 2011
Please add Google basemaps.  Please

Aug 23, 2011

Google Maps API v3 now allows users to stylize Map features as well as click to identify them (which was not available before).

Jul 29, 2011

The biggest complaint we have is that the Bing imagery is a terrible. It hasn't been updated for years and outside of urban areas it is simply awful. 9 times out of 10 the Google imagery is better for many of the locations we need to map. Please ESRI, give this strong consideration.

Jul 28, 2011
This is the number one request I get from my staff.

Jun 30, 2011
I actually find that the feature labelling (and hierarchy) and general symbolization in google maps is clearer and more quickly readable / interpretable than that in bing or most other services.  Bing has made improvements in the last few months, but they're still not as nice as the presentation of google maps.

As others have noted, data from one may be better than data from another, depending on the area in question.

Glad this is under evaluation - I hope it's positive!

Chris J

Dec 29, 2010
 If this is picked up, access to Google Street View within the base map directly in ArcMap should be included.  For utilities, having street view within the application would be valuable for editing, when measurements from as - builts are typically given off of catchbasins, poles, hydrants, etc. which are all visible in google street view.  Now we do a lot of toggling back and forth.

Dec 9, 2010
For Georgia, USA, at least, Google usesUS Department of Agriculture NAIP crop imagery, which USDA collects every 2 years.
I discovered that by comparing cloud reflections in lakes, looking at Google Maps and the USDA imagery we purchased (very cheaply) in 2007. Same results with the 2009 USDA imagery.

We are currently evaluating this idea for a future release

Nov 29, 2010
I found a nice little tool . It has some limitations but its free.

Nov 14, 2010

while it won't help with or web apps, you can check out this new service that we'll be adding to Arc2Earth ( ) where you can purchase access to worldwide Google Map data (as well as access to their other Map services: Elevation, Routing, Geocoding  etc) directly from ArcMap




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