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Google Street View confirmed for Oman

An official statement from the government announced the addition of the country to Street View

Last year, in May, an open position for a street view driver in Oman was posted by DeRisk. While no direct mention of Google Street View existed, it was speculated this job offer was for the introduction of the service in this country. Today, we got confirmation Oman is getting official Google Street View coverage. The Ministry of Transport, Communications and Information Technology published a notice in Arabic on its official website and Twitter:

According to the Ministry, the project started at the beginning of February and will last until 2025. Two phases are planned. The first phase will concern the three main cities of Oman: Muscat, Sohar and Salalah. The second phase will then cover the rest of the country.

The three cities planned for the first phase: Muscat, Sohar and Salalah

The exact schedule is not known, neither if different cars will drive each of the three cities individually, or if they will all drive the same city one by one during the first phase. As for the second phase, no additional information was provided for the other areas.

To cover the country, a fleet of three vehicles equipped with gen 4 cameras are ready to roam Oman’s roads and streets. Again, no regular vehicles are used, Google keeps using pickups with Trekkers mounted on the back.

The vehicles used for Google Street View in Oman

The latest country added to Street View using regular cars was Austria in 2018. Since, all the additional countries were covered using Trekkers on pickups. Why is Google only sending Trekkers is unknown, probably to save costs, and the new small camera that will be used to cover new places through partnerships is apparently still not ready. Oman may not be the new country that will break this streak but, at least, the coverage will have the highest quality!

This announcement is good news for Google Street View since Oman was not the only country that had driver job offers: Kuwait also had one at the same time. Will this country receive official coverage too? Nothing confirmed, but the chances are now clearly good as the offers were identical. In the meanwhile, with Namibia and Oman confirmed, Bosnia and Herzegovina (which also has the same job offer available) and Kuwait with good probabilities, and Apple driving their regular cars in India and Vietnam that may push Google to send gen 4 cameras to the former and finally publish the latter, the future of Street View in terms of new contents is getting really exciting!