Frequently asked questions
Why did you make the new Google Earth a web app?
Classic desktop Earth must be downloaded and installed on your Windows, Mac or Linux computer. By making new Earth a web app (on Chrome, for now) it can be used on most computers including Chromebooks, without a download. Being on the web makes it easier for us to make updates and ensure that you're using the most up to date product. Plus, it makes it easier for you to share your own experiences with Google Earth by using a simple link.
Does it work on Chromebooks and Chrome for Android/iOS?
Why is the web version Chrome-only?
Our new cross-platform 3D rendering engine currently uses a Chrome-only technology called Native Client to bring Earth to the web. However, we’re closely tracking the evolution of WebAssembly (especially threading) which will enable us to bring Google Earth to other major browsers like Edge, Firefox and Safari. Stay tuned!
Which phones and versions can use the new Google Earth?
Google Earth requires Android 4.1 (Jellybean) or higher and works best with newer phones and tablets running Android 4.4+ (Kitkat). For iOS users, the new Google Earth requires iOS 9 or higher and works best with newer phones and tablets.
Why is some of the Voyager content broken on my older Android device?
Some of the Voyager stories may not work properly in Android 4.1 - 4.3 (Jellybean) because of limited support for HTML5 and CSS on older devices.
Where is my favourite classic desktop Earth feature? (e.g. historical imagery, measuring tools, etc)
While rebuilding the new Google Earth from scratch we decided to start with features that are essential for exploring and learning about the planet: Voyager, Knowledge Cards and I’m Feeling Lucky. Some of the features you may be missing from classic desktop Earth are some of our favourites too! While we work to prioritise and redesign many of these features for new Earth, you can continue to use them in classic desktop Earth.
What will happen with the classic desktop Earth?
The new Google Earth doesn’t yet have all the features that many long-time classic desktop Earth users enjoy. While we build more of these core features into the new Google Earth, we will continue to maintain the classic desktop app.
Why don't my KMLs work properly in the new Google Earth?
Most moderately-sized KML files and simple features should work in the new Google Earth now. While we work to support more advanced features you can keep using classic desktop Earth. Learn more.