As much as I hate to admit it, it looks like microsoft might be finally catching up to google with their map technology. Last time I checked Microsoft’s maps (a few months ago), they were barely supporting Firefox, were extremely slow, images were low quality, and the user interface wasn’t very intuitive. Today, I checked and their new Local Live is much improved. The images are much clearer, the sever response is much faster, firefox worked just fine, and they even include “birds eye” airial views.
This certainly gives developers at Google Maps an incentive to keep improving, and I am certain that they will respond soon with their own improvements. The competition is certainly clear as both have raised the bar for AJAX interfaces to new levels. However, it appears that Google’s is a little faster and supports more browsers. This rivalry will fuel more improvements from both companies, so it can only help the users, no matter which giant you want to see win.