After a couple of initial hiccups in the launch, the application is now live.
If this were a report card, I would be writing on it “Must try harder”! – searches on Virtual Earth for “Cork, Ireland” or “Dublin, Ireland” yield a “No results were found.” error so it looks like Microsoft the world begins and ends at the US borders (even Canadian cities are not included)!
The application doesn’t work in Firefox on the Mac but does work in Safari.
In a search for my sister’s address (my sister lives in Texas, specifically Horseshoe Bnd, McKinney, TX 75069) the Google Maps result was far superior to the Virtual Earth result – see below:
The Virtual Earth result was zoomed way out and zooming in didn’t find Horseshoe Bnd for me:
The Google Maps result for the same search zoomed right in on the street and is therefore far more useful
Microsoft have a lot of work left to do with this app before Google need to start worrying. Having said that, the fact that microsoft have entered this area can only be good because now Google have a little more reason to keep innovating and developing Google Maps!
To track updates to Virtual Earth, see the Virtual Earth blog.