NearLondon, software that allows PC users to explore a 3D version of the capital from their computer, will be available from today.

Once the software is installed on a PC, users can use their internet connection to explore the streets of London, which are laid out just like in real life with all the shops and offices in their correct positions.

Many of the retailers have a real-life presence in the virtual city, which means web users can view items in a shop's window and click through to the retailer's website to purchase goods.

Just like London in real life, there will be plenty of other web users exploring the digital recreation of the UK's capital at the same time.

NearLondon currently only covers Oxford Street, Regents Street and Bond Street. However, the company says it plans expand over the coming months to include the whole West End including Mayfair, Soho and Covent Garden.

It also hopes to feature streamed videos, games, virtual concerts in the future along with virtual shops.

"This is very much the start of a journey for us, rather than a destination arrived at," says Alex Wrottesley, co-founder of parent company NearGlobal, which developed software.

"The launch version of NearLondon will give users a taste of what is to come with the 3D web, and we hope to be at the heart of it."

NearLondon can be downloaded from a dedicated website now. Alternatively, it will also be handed out on disc to Londonders from December 7.

Broadband speed test

See also: Sony: 3DTV to go mainstream in 2012