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Microsoft has begun work on its own version of Google’s Street View, named Streetside – across Europe.

Their cars, fitted with cameras have started taking pictures around London and will start mapping major cities across Europe next month.

Microsoft Streetside is already available in 56 towns and cities in the USA.

Microsoft are looking to avoid the privacy concerns that Google has suffered, despite plans to gather wi-fi data.  They have already come unstuck in Germany.

Google ran into trouble while creating Street View after it emerged they were intercepting and storing private information from some hotspots.

The incident lead to Google being forced to make radical changes to its privacy policies.

Microsoft said its data collection would be the “bare minimum”.

When Streetside goes live, Microsoft plans to introduce contextual advertising into the platform.

Unlike Google, Microsoft has no plans to map every street in the world.