Australia is set to get the very first public transport mapping layer for Google Maps outside of the northern hemisphere. There's only one small catch though - it's for Perth.
Google held a press conference in Sydney today which gave a sneak preview of the Google Transit experience which Westralians will have access to.
Perth residents will be able to plan their trips by public transport using the Google Maps interface, which will also have points of interest built in, such as cafes. The live demo today looked similar to the normal Google Maps interface.
Google's head of engineering, Alan Noble, said that while the company is keen to roll out Google Transit across Australia, it will need the various state transit authorities to get involved and provide data. He said the company has held "preliminary discussions" with the NSW and Victorian authorities, but couldn't put a timeframe on when we might get our Google Transit maps. Sigh.
We weren't given a launch date but they said the service would go live "shortly". Congratulations, Perth. I guess you guys deserve to get something first, for a change. ;)
Under the cut I've put a couple of screenshots showing the Google Transit sidebar and map interface.