Now you know the Basics on how to submit the Perfect Wayspot, but your jurney has just started and now it’s time go deeper. It’s time learn the best way to make sure reviewers can properly review your submission as quickly as possible: by creating and publishing a 360 Photosphere to Google Street View.
But fret not! You won’t need to buy any special equipment nor spend any money to properly do this! It’s also not something only for the hackers or professional photographers, it’s actually pretty easy to do, you’ll just need to spend 3 minutes of your time to do it properly!
The importance of a Photo Sphere
Ok, so I wanted to submit a new Wayspot on a park that I found an empty cell on and I realized that bridges on trails and in parks are now eligible Wayspots! Knowing a bridge in that exact spot, I decided to go out and enjoy the beautiful day.
Yes, I know this won't be easy to get approved on Wayfarer... But we have official word about this from Niantic, so let's do it :P
After getting there I took my pictures, prepared the best submission I could but, when verifying if there was any Google Street View of the place…
There wasn’t any! So there was no practical way for the reviewer to validate if my submission was actually in that spot! The best they would see is that satellite image or a Street View of that Street behind the park (which is actually higher than the park, making it impossible to actually see the what’s down below in the park itself). Now imagine that this happens on 80% of all submission reviews on Wayfarer!
But it’s incredibly easy to solve this, I just took 3 minutes and created my own Photo Sphere on the Google Street View app and…
Click and drag on the image! It's a 360 Photo :)
Imagine now what its like to review a submission on a rural town where Google’s car hasn’t arrived, or if it did, it did so in 2011 and it’s photos are incredibly outdated, or in the middle of a forest or a park that’s even more dense than that. In those cases it’s basically impossible to know with 100% certainty if that Point of Interest is actually there or not.
Take your time to understand the reasons why taking a Photo Sphere is incredibly important:
- Some places do not have any form of Point of View of the pedestrian, being of extreme importance a Photo Sphere to validate Submissions.
- In Parks, Forests or Reserves it’s almost impossible to distinguish anything just using the satellite view, even more so if you’re submitting a Trail Marker for instance. You Support Picture might not be enough.
- In many, many cases Google’s Stree View can be actually super outdated, I’ve seen pictures from 2011! The Point of Interest I was trying to review wasn’t even built yet! So in those cases a Photo Sphere is THE BEST way to support your submission.
- It’s way more difficult to edit a photosphere than a support picture so by submitting one you’re basically adding a “this is real, here’s some proof” stamp to your submissions. Making it way more likely to be accepted.
- One 360 Photo Sphere from a Museum, a Park or a place with a lot of possible Wayspots may actually be useful in approving a lot of Wayspots, not just yours!
Below an example of a WRONG way to do a 360 photo sphere that I took. This one could’ve been used to review 2 Wayspots at the same time if was completed properly.
You can drag this image! Notice how it's not complete (it doesn't have the Sky). If a Photosphere is not completed IT WON'T BE PUBLISHED on Google Maps!
That Photosphere could've been used to review both those submissions.
How to make your own photo sphere
Ok so now that you understand the importance of a photo sphere I’ll teach you step-by-step how to submit one:
- Download the Google Street View App on the App Store or Google Play
- Walk to the place where you want to take your submitted your Point of Interest and open the app.
- Press the bottom button and choose “Take a photo sphere”
Now what you need to do is STAND STILL and point the camera to the dots in the screen. Here are some tips:
Try to keep your camera straight, always in the same angle.
Do NOT rotate your wrist during the process.
Rotate only YOUR BODY, by turning in your own axis.
Do not adjust your arms, neither closer nor further away from your body, after taking the first picture!
There's no mistery, just point at the dots!
After finishing taking all the photos, the button on the bottom will turn green. Only press it when its green, if it isn’t green it means you missed a dot find it and take the picture. Press and wait for it to process.
After processing, press on the picture to visualize it.
Click on the orange rectangle and there you go! Your photo is now on Google Street View and Google Maps!
If you do not publish your photo no one will be able to see your submission! Make sure you take all the pictures, process your photosphere then publish it! Otherwise no one will be able to use it for review.
It takes a little bit until your photo is propagated on Google's servers, and may not appear instantly on Google Maps for everyone. Just wait a bit :)
Again, remember to take ALL the pictures and make sure the button is GREEN! Otherwise you won’t be able to publish your photo and no one but yourself will be able to see it!
After you published it, in case Google put the location of you picture in the wrong place, you can go back and edit it:
- Click on Profile
- Click once on the image you wish to edit so the app will focus on it
- Now that it’s focused, click and hold that same image to select it
- Press the 3 dot menu on the blue bar on top of the selected picture and click > Edit Location
- Drag the black dot somewhere close to where you took the photo sphere, and click the confirm button at the top!
This is just an example, guys. I'm not placing my photosphere in the middle of the buildings!
I even made a quick video where I show you how I took this exact photo sphere and published it to Google Maps! Check it out
And that’s it folks! We’ve arrived at the end of Part 2, now you’re on a whole new level!
Thanks to @kkbiten for pointing out some flaws on the original text.
On Part 3 is where things get super interesting, I’ll talk about S2 Cells, IITC and teach you how to choose and place your Wayspot on the PERFECT place! This is the most important part of the Guide, do not miss it!
If you want to leave feedback, suggestions or critiques you can reach me on my twitter below!