Google has announced the acquisition of high-resolution aerial photography company ImageAmerica.
It is thought that the company will bring new technological contributions to the company’s mapping services and in particular will be applied to its Google Earth feature.
Stephen Chau, product manager at Google said: "Since we’re in the research and development phase right now it may be some time before you see any of this imagery in Google Maps or Earth."
According to computing website PC Pro, ImageAmerica’s speciality lies in orthoimagery, a technique used to combine high-quality aerial photography with the geometric qualities of mapping allowing for ground features to be displayed in their true location.
ImageAmerica provided the high-resolution black and white imagery of New Orleans available to Google Maps and Earth users following Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
Earlier this month Google Maps introduced new features allowing users to create their own maps with personalised locations.
The features also incorporate a data overlay function that lets users build data and video on to maps.