A9.com Maps combines state-of-the-art mapping features with 35 million Block ViewTM images
Palo Alto, Calif. − August 16, 2005 − A9.com, Inc., a subsidiary of Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN), today launched “A9.com Maps,” a new service that shows users an interactive map and corresponding street-level images in a single interface. A9's Block ViewTM technology brings traditional maps to life by combining driving directions and other convenient mapping tools with street-level images of millions of places and their surroundings. The fully-functional A9.com Maps beta is now available at http://maps.a9.com.
“We're making maps slightly less abstract and closer to the real world,” said A9.com CEO Udi Manber. “With A9.com Maps you can actually see pictures of where you're going and places on the way there.”
A9.com Maps starts like other web-based maps by asking users to type an address (or two addresses in the case of driving directions) and providing an interactive map in return. But the similarities end there. In addition to the map, A9.com Maps users have a wide variety of tools to learn how to get where they want to go and what the sights will look like on the way there. For example, users can:
- See street-level images of the addresses they enter.
- Virtually walk up and down the street to see different photo angles of restaurants, offices, shops, public parks and landmarks.
- Virtually jump to the opposite side of the street.
- Click anywhere on the map to see images of places nearby.
- Zoom in and out and see an overlay of all streets for which A9.com currently has Block View images. - Create driving directions, and then click on points along the way (intersections, street corners, etc.) to see how they look in the real world.
- Click on a point in the map to get the corresponding address.
A9's Block View technology transformed traditional yellow pages when it was introduced in January as part of A9.com Yellow Pages. A9.com developed the technology to efficiently capture photographs of businesses using trucks equipped with digital cameras, global positioning system (GPS) receivers, and proprietary software and hardware. This convenience gives users a better way to select a business, recognize businesses they have seen in the past, find nearby parking spaces, get a feel of the neighborhood, and much more. Block View has grown to cover more than 22 U.S. cities with 35 million images. Block View images are currently available in Atlanta, Austin, Boston, Chicago, Dallas/Ft. Worth, Denver, Detroit, Los Angeles, New York City (Manhattan), Philadelphia, Portland (OR), Sacramento, Salt Lake City, San Diego, San Francisco Bay Area, San Jose, Seattle, Washington, D.C., Phoenix, Miami, Houston and Fargo. Portions of more than a dozen other major U.S. metro areas are also covered.
A9.com, Inc., a separately branded and operated subsidiary of Amazon.com, Inc., opened its Palo Alto, California office in October 2003 to research and build innovative search technologies.
Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN), a Fortune 500 company based in Seattle, opened its virtual doors on the World Wide Web in July 1995 and today offers Earth's Biggest Selection. Amazon.com seeks to be Earth's most customer-centric company, where customers can find and discover anything they might want to buy online, and endeavors to offer customers the lowest possible prices. Amazon.com and third-party sellers offer millions of unique new, refurbished, and used items in categories such as health and personal care, jewelry and watches, gourmet food, sports and outdoors, apparel and accessories, books, music, DVDs, electronics and office, toys and baby, and home and garden.
Amazon.com and its affiliates operate seven retail websites: www.amazon.com, www.amazon.co.uk, www.amazon.de, www.amazon.co.jp, www.amazon.fr, www.amazon.ca, and www.joyo.com.
As used herein, "Amazon.com," "we," "our" and similar terms include Amazon.com, Inc., and its subsidiaries, unless the context indicates otherwise.
Forward Looking Statement
This announcement contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Actual results may differ significantly from management's expectations. These forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties that include, among others, risks related to potential future losses, significant amount of indebtedness, competition, management of growth, potential fluctuations in operating results, international expansion, outcomes of legal proceedings and claims, fulfillment center optimization, seasonality, commercial agreements, acquisitions, and strategic transactions, foreign exchange rates, system interruption, consumer trends, inventory, limited operating history, government regulation and taxation, fraud, and new business areas. More information about factors that potentially could affect Amazon.com's financial results is included in Amazon.com's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2004, and all subsequent filings.