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Google Street View of penguins in Antarctica.

Google has launched its online Street View service in Antarctica with a 360-degree ground-level view of an area called Half Moon Island showing penguins and the coast.

With Thursday's announcement, Street View is now available on all seven continents, although it has met with varying degrees of resistance as it expands outside the U.S.

Brian McClendon, vice-president of engineering, Google Earth and Maps, also announced Street View is launching in Ireland and Brazil.

Cultures with differing expectations of privacy have fought to keep the company's image-capturing vehicles off their streets.

In March 2009, Google began letting Canadians know when they would be filming, after Canada's privacy commissioner raised concerns.

Street View, launched in 2007, uses a compilation of photos taken by Google using vehicles mounted with specialized multi-camera GPS technology.

In Antarctica, the company used a combination of Google and user photos.

The street-level view can be accessed from Google Maps by clicking on the small orange figure that appears above the zoom control and dropping it on the map.