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Apple and Google use 'spy planes' for 3D maps

Cameras can show 4in objects sparking privacy fears

Apple is rumoured to announce its own 3D maps with iOS 6 later today which reportedly uses 'spy planes' to take close up images.

The firm will supposedly allow users to see images previously only available to intelligence services, according to The Telegraph. Cameras mounted on aircraft will be able to show objects as small as 4in as well as the sides of buildings, sparking privacy fears.

Apple 3D maps

The technology has already been tested in 20 cities including London since Apple acquired Swedish 3D mapping specialist, C3 Technologies. It will rival the popular Google Maps.

Nick Pickles, director of the Big Brother Watch privacy campaign group, said the technology was more intrusive than Google's Street View because it would "take us over the garden fence".

"You won't be able to sunbathe in your garden without worrying about an Apple or Google plane buzzing overhead taking pictures,"

Google announced it plans to add 3D maps of metropolitan areas to be used on mobile devices. It will reportedly use cameras mounted on aeroplanes.

"This is possible thanks to a combination of our new imagery rendering techniques and computer vision that let us automatically create 3D cityscapes, complete with buildings, terrain and even landscaping, from 45-degree aerial imagery." said Google.

Join us at 6pm for live coverage of Apple's WWDC event in San Francisco. Live: WWDC keynote.

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