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Toggle photospheres in map editor


Google Maps loves to prioritize photoshperes made by users above regular Streetview pictures. The problem is that when making a custom map, we end up selecting photospheres so many times while trying to click on the Streetview blue line.

Do you know if the API allows you to disable the photosphere blue and orange dots? If yes, can you add a switch or whatever to toggle them on/off?

KillerMapper Report inappropriate content


  • Hi

    Thanks for the feedback, this seems like it could be very useful. We'll look into ti!

  • Hi, thanks for the answer. In the meantime can you check the issue with map editor being long to add/remove points when reaching a big amount of them? I did another thread about it. Thanks.
  • Hi KillerMapper

    I looked into the issue with the slowness of the editor, please see the reply in the other thread. To sum it up we know what is causing the issue but it's not as easy to solve as you might expect, we haven't given up on it though.

  • Hello, any news about this?

    I tried to mess up with the map editor, modifying the page, trying some script... to disable them but no success. Google Maps API has something to disable photosphere selection and I tried some example, it works well:

    If you check this code:
    , add "source: google.maps.StreetViewSource.OUTDOOR" after the radius in "sv.getPanorama({location: event.latLng, radius: 50}, processSVData);
    });" (line 28) then run the code, you'll be able to click everywhere, even outside of the roads, and it will never pick a photosphere.

    I hope you can add this setting, it's really something small but time-saver for us, especially on big maps where the editor takes seconds for every action (which makes the unwanted photosphere selection even more annoying).

    Another idea: use version to display the streetview coverage. I noticed it only displays regular blue lines and not the photosphere dots. Not sure it is actually something that can be used so I just drop it there in case you want to have a look.

    Also a reminded that there is still no warning about being pro to make a map, except a small line at the bottom that isn't visible without scrolling even with a 1080p monitor (and the button still becomes green after putting 5 locations, which is particularly confusing). Add a big pop-up to warn non-pro users and tell them they have to be pro to save would be enough.


  • Hi

    Unfortunately there is no news regarding the map editor performance for very large maps. We've been discussing internally around adding the possibility to select areas instead of individual locations in the map editor. Perhaps this would solve the original problem with the need to add a lot of locations? This however would require a larger technical overhaul though, but is something that we've been looking at for a while.

    Nice find in the API, this setting at least sounds like it should cover our needs. I'll add it to our todo-list for the map editor.

    Regarding the information text in the map editor there should be an information text on the top of the map editor for non-pro users (however this might have been added after you wrote this post).

  • Hey, three years late to the party here but just wondering if this went anywhere? Just created a custom map with some 800+ locations but it seems half of them are being put in totally useless photospheres which is frustrating!

    Since I'm importing coordinates of restaurants, most of the streetview results are the interiors, so it would be great to have a toggle to disable these if the API allows, as KillerMapper said before.

    Ben Chilcott
  • Just had a thought - if the above solution isn't possible, could the negative ratings for each round be passed back to the map creator so that they can see the levels causing problems and remove them manually?

    I guess this would only be relevant to the handpicked locations, as the polygonal region points are selected at random.
    Ben Chilcott
  • Sadly there is no clean way to disable photospheres with the API. The existing solutions are more like hacks than anything else: they work, but they also have negative effects (ex using the source setting will block unofficial data but also offroad official data which some countries like Faroes island are executively made of).

    The only hope is that Google adds a proper setting but it is unlikely to happen as almost nobody care about that (only a few of us in the GeoGuessr community care so they won't waste time and money just for us).
  • As a mapmaker, I would really like to be able to turn off photospheres as a map-making tool. When you want to drop a pin when doing a handpicked map on a street viewpoint and you cant as it snaps to a photosphere that is low quality or is OK but you want the player to move otherwise the point is unsolvable, this problem gets really tiresome.
    It seems to favour the photosphere before regular street view as a pin drop point. This often makes that point unusable as you cant start the play where you want making all the research in finding that start point a waste of time as you decide where to dismiss that as a start point or use it and hope it does not spoil the overall map.
    I see this is an ongoing problem but it would be a big help and solve a lot of frustration.
    Would not be so bad if the majority of the photosphere were in the place they register them on the maps.
    Well, I still enjoy making the maps.
  • Sadly years later Google still didn't provide any tool for developers to not select photospheres. This means it is impossible for GeoGuessr to implement any setting.

    The OUTDOOR setting still works but it's like a hack which can break at any time. I still wish GeoGuessr would implement it as a map setting (disabled by default and with a warning as it is highly experimental) as it can be useful.

    I created a suggestion on Google so we can have settings to select / filter specific kind of data, so the more people star this issue and ask for Google to implement it, the more chances we will have:

    It becomes a real problem with more and more people uploading low quality street view everywhere...
  • Yes, clicked star on it
    Still enjoy the game but just had to vent after having to disregard a load of points after spending a good lump of time on research.
    But thanks for bothering to respond 😀


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