Google STREET VIEW came about primarily to broadcast the limitless resources at Google’s disposal (the same reason the Empire built the Death Star), and to impress and astound Google’s audience (I have nothing but admiration for these goals, by the way). I’ve taken to satisfying my wanderlust with virtual drives down some beautiful roads out west or in New Zealand, but I have not met many others to whom this practice appeals. On the contrary, 3 or 4 people complained to me that Google STREET VIEW is lame because the low-res images make beautiful places look plain.
I think low-res images have little to do with the problem. Before Google sends its cars for a second lap around the world to take higher resolution photos for STREET VIEW, they ought to perform the following cheap and easy fix: Crank up the color saturation on the pictures (see the subtle difference below).
A thick glass unit encased the 360 degree cameras that took the pictures for street view, and that unit desaturated all of the photos so that they look ghostly and unrealistic. A simple saturation increase would compensate and correct for the color distortion, and it would hold over the users until Google decides it wants to send the cars back in to re-photograph every street of the Unites States, Canada, New Zealand, Australia, and so on.