With the new Google Maps integrating Google Earth and 3D into the web browser I'm experiencing some performance problems on my PC when I feel the need to look something up while processing power is diverted to tasks like compiling. Is there a way to do away with the Earth view and return to 2D satellite view? It seemed like a few weeks ago this was possible but nowadays I end up with Earth view all the time.
The Lite mode of the new Google Maps does not include the 3D Earth view or other 3D functionality. You can see if you are in lite mode by looking for the "Lite mode" indicator in the bottom right corner of the map.
Lite mode supported browsers and operating systems
The new Google Maps may default to Lite mode for older browsers and operating systems, as well as on browsers that do not support WebGL and on systems where WebGL is known to be unstable. Lite mode supported browses include Safari 6+, IE 10, or IE 11. Lite mode will also work for Windows XP, (except for Firefox) or Mac OSX lower than 10.8.3.
If you are having problems running 3D mode, and have a supported browser and operating system as listed above, there may be other issues preventing you from running in 3D mode. There are a few things you can try to resolve the issue:
- Restart your browser
- Ensure you have applied all system updates, particularly video card driver updates.
If the new Google Maps seems slow, using Lite mode can often help improve performance:
- Click this link to switch to Lite Mode: http://www.google.com/maps/preview/?force=canvas
- Click this link to switch to full 3D mode: http://www.google.com/maps/preview/?force=webgl
- Click this link to revert to your system’s default: http://www.google.com/maps/preview/?force=clear
Note: if you are having trouble with one of the links, you may need to edit the URL to align with your regular Google Maps domain (e.g. change .com to .co.uk)
If you're in edit mode (i.e. signed in to Google), in the lower-right corner of the white box that covers half the map look for a tiny almost invisible down arrow. Click it and several optional "styles" will pop up. One of them is good old sat view.
If you're not signed in just looking a map, just click the "sat" icon in the lower left corner. Unfortunately, this icon is not available in edit mode.