Working with data from the U.S. Geological Survey and NASA's Landsat 7
satellite, Google has sifted through mountains of data to identify and "stitch" the new images together on Maps. While in the past Google relied on one picture to create an image, Google says it now uses thousands of images together to get rid of any clouds and other atmospheric effects. Users can see these clear, high-definition images when they use Maps's satellite view or Google Earth.
Google has also refreshed some of its images from around the world. As areas have changed over the past few years, Google has updated its images to ensure users have a "current" image of places from central Africa to Saudi Arabia.
This is Google's second mapping announcement in recent months. Last month, the company unveiled its Earth Engine time-lapse imagery of the earth from 1984-2012. Google used the same technological process here to create the new Map images.