How Often Does Google Maps Update Satellite Images?

Google Maps has altered how we perceive the world. There is no question in my mind. You can get a close-up, aerial perspective of almost every place on Earth by utilising Google Maps’ Satellite View feature.

You might be curious as to how frequently these satellite photos are updated. In fact, it’s possible that you’ll frequently find out-of-date perspectives or inaccurate location information. Whether you’re using Google Earth or Google Maps, both applications use the same data sources.

How Often Does Google Maps Update Satellite Images?

Normally, Google’s satellite image database is updated continuously, around-the-clock, seven days a week. On a regular basis, you won’t typically see live changes or updates reflect. Before the satellite photographs accurately reflect how the location actually appears in reality, there may be a delay of months or, frequently, years.

In densely populated locations, Google Maps satellite photos are updated more regularly. The Google Maps blog claims that the solution is location-dependent. For instance, weekly updates will be available for major cities like Philadelphia, Seattle, Tampa, or Boston. Rural areas, on the other hand, might only see updates once every 1-3+ years.

In the end, it’s impossible to know exactly when a particular Satellite View will change. However, there are a few different approaches you can take to determine the most recent update date for a specific location.

Determining When a Google Maps “Satellite Image” Was Taken

You may find out roughly when the current satellite image was shot using Google Earth. Go to Google Earth first, then wait for it to load.

Once you are in the World view, you can zoom in anywhere or search for a specific area. To see the “Imagery date” on the bottom toolbar, zoom in close enough. It will be on the left side, close to the Google logo and the indicator for the percentage of the page loaded. Check out the image below.

Only Google Earth will support this technique; Google Maps Satellite View won’t have a similar user interface. Additionally, you must be sufficiently zoomed in for it to function. The date ought to show up once you have zoomed in.

Remember that depending on where your cursor is placed, this date will change. It might provide you with a specific date or a wide range of dates. In either case, it’s helpful for establishing a rough range for when the most recent satellite photographs of a certain area were taken.

Get Notified When a Google Maps Satellite Image Updates

The “Follow Your World” service was originally accessible to Google users. With the use of this technology, Google could inform you when a certain Satellite View was updated. This tool allows you to set up automatic alerts for whenever Google changes a particular location that you specify. In the end, this was a great technique if you were interested in following updates or simply observing geographic or urban changes over time.

Unfortunately, Google Earth has stated that as of September 2019, the Follow Your World tool will be discontinued on September 30. Nothing comparable to alert you when a satellite image updated has been offered since then.

Google has not yet released a similar product or replaced the Follow Your World function since it was retired. This tool is no longer accessible, at least to the general public, due to privacy concerns. This was such a helpful way to determine updates, so it’s a shame.

Determining When a Google Maps “Street View” Image Was Taken

Another up-close look at our surroundings is the Street View feature of Google Maps. The photos taken for Street View are updated frequently but not consistently, just as satellite photos. These photos normally have a 1-3 year delay, though this can vary. It’s pretty easy to figure out when a Google Maps Street View photograph was shot.

Go to Google Maps first on your preferred web browser. Zoom in to the appropriate spot or use the search bar to find a location. An “Image capture” will show up in the lower right corner of your screen once you enter street view. Check out the image below.

When Will Google Maps “Street View” Update?

Google does not provide a particular timeline for when and where Street View will update, similar to how it does with Satellite View. They do provide a lot better indication of where they will be gathering street view next, though. Simply visit the Google Street View homepage to get started.

You can find a section named “Where Google is collecting Street View next” by scrolling down below the display of revolving photos. You may get a general idea of where the Street View vehicle or trekker will be next with this feature.

A list of nations will be presented right next to the current month. After clicking “find out more,” it will list the locations in the country you selected. It will then direct you to a page that tells you where they are going next. Each location’s region, district, and time are listed.

Remember that Google will always display a wide range of dates, usually from January to December of any given year. The information you receive is ultimately limited to a municipal level; they won’t provide you with any more particular than what is provided here.


There are ways to determine when a certain area was last updated, even if it is difficult to forecast when Google Maps Satellite View will update. In average, Satellite View updates every one to three years, while this frequency may be substantially higher in densely populated areas and even lower in rural areas.

It is regrettable that the Follow Your World function is being retired. However, the only reliable method of knowing when a certain site will update is to manually check it sometimes.

But because Google Maps uses the same database as Google Earth, it’s the best tool for figuring out when the most recent satellite photographs were taken. With this knowledge, you may more accurately estimate which areas will receive updates next. The photographs will probably be updated shortly if a section is seriously out of date (more than 2-3 years).



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