Shooting spherical panorama without distortion is just a matter of using a panoramic (VR) tripod head that allows you to pivot the camera/lens about the centre of projection, using a lens with a known distortion profile and competent stitching application.
To get results anything like shown in the Google example will require multiple exposures in each orientation in order to handle the wide dynamic range. A fisheye lens will give you the widest coverage in the fewest shots.
If you're doing this professionally then there are motorized heads which can control the camera which come with software to stitch the images afterwards so you just need to set the tripod up, press a button and then make a cup of coffee. The Rodeon VR heads are the top of the line here, but prices are in the thousands.
There are flash panorama apps that allow you to embed the result into a webpage without using quicktime. There are some good proprietary ones which support a similar type of virtual tour, such as KRPano. Some like Syborg Studios offer a free version which has limited support for tours (and displays a watermark).
On the complete free side there are Pan0 and PanoSalado.