Android developers will soon be allowed to build Google Now access into their apps

Android developers will soon be allowed to build Google Now access into their apps
A big change is coming to Google Now. Aparna Chennapragada, Director of Product Management for Google Now, revealed at SXSW on Sunday that an open API will be available soon that all developers can build into their apps. This will give Google Now the ability to search for information from more apps than just those allowed by Google.

And if you're curious about what happens when Google Now finds different info from two different sites, "individual user app usage patterns" will be used to determine which information to go with. That means that in a situation when more than one answer is being provided by competing apps, your personal app usage will be used to make the decision what Google Now will tell you.

And if you love going to theme parks, there is further good news for Google Now users. Chennapragada has the Google Now team working on displaying cards that would show how long the wait is at certain attractions for various parks. The idea for this came from a trip she made to Disneyland, where long lines can eat up most of your day.

Another focus for Google Now is to personalize some experiences. For example, if someone likes to arrive at the airport earlier than normal to catch a flight, this knowledge could be built into Google Now cards. We could see more personalized information coming over the next year.

source: TNW via Engadget

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20 Comments

1. Arthurhkt

Posts: 723; Member since: Apr 19, 2012

IMO, Apple Siri, Google Now, Microsoft Cortana and BlackBerry Assistant are still not really useful for me, it MIGHT useful to other people, temporary in my country talking to a voice assistant on a phone in public still cause tons of awkwardness.

3. colinkiama

Posts: 60; Member since: Nov 23, 2013

You do realise you can just type what you want to say when using google now or cortana

5. AlikMalix unregistered

Well typing in a reminder or text or manually changing settings, or manual open an app and select a person to find - does not require to initialize siri.. Doing a search or do anything that Google Now does is as easy as swiping down from middle of screen (any screen) - so to be honest, why type anything you want Siri to do when you can just do it manually.. I'm not sure why a person would want to open Google Now or Cortana (or Siri) to complete a task when all that is available without any voice assistant.. Siri, Google Now, and Cortana just helps any task done super fast instead of doing it manually. So, my question is: why would you initialize Google Now or Cortana to type in "text my wife 'I'm on my way'" when you can just initialize the text and type in 'I'm on my way'....?

10. Arthurhkt

Posts: 723; Member since: Apr 19, 2012

Yes i know, but if so, it miss the point of the voice assistant function.

18. AlikMalix unregistered

For me using Voice is faster than tapping and typing. Here's an example: Grab the phone push the button and say "find my wife" at this point Touch ID unlock the phone and Siri says "looking for [name]", a map is displayed with your wife's location. (at this point you can proceed with "tell me when she leaves this location", or "when she arrives at home (or other location)". Without Siri: Grab the phone push home button to unlock (or pin), navigate to FindMyFriends App, Open, Locate and select the person you want to locate, wait for execution. Basically one requires no input, no eye distraction, and virtually no time wasted, the other requires certain swipes, taps, eyes, and takes more time. This is roughly the same across Android, iPhone, and WP... On some android phones that are password protected, you will be required to unlock the phone before using Google Now; it's the same on iOS but the phone gets unlocked automatically with Touch ID when you have your finger placed on home button for Siri. Now with Older iPhones (4s and 5) you dont have Touch ID, so it will also ask to unlock the phone first for some things. But not everything requires an unlocked phone, like calls, texts, searching the web, etc... but you can specify if you want Siri to function on locked screen or not incase you dont trust people around you...

4. fzacek

Posts: 2486; Member since: Jan 26, 2014

Maybe not on most devices, but on my Moto X, it's pretty damn useful. Anytime when I'm at home, I can just ask it to call someone, tell me the weather, or make a Google search for me. I love the convenience...

6. Bjray

Posts: 199; Member since: May 29, 2014

Phones with Always-on Google Now have that functionality. Love that about my Nexus 6.

7. AlikMalix unregistered

Are some android phones dont have Google Now ready at lockscreen? I thought that was only in the past (older versions of Android)... I'd say that, unless you dont have a voice assistant ready from lock screen - it may be too much hassle than to just do it manually...

9. vincelongman

Posts: 5692; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

He means Always-on Google Now i.e. you can use Google Now even when the your phone is asleep I think the only 2013 phone that had it was the Moto X But last year basically all the Android flagships had that feature too But all 2013 phones (and maybe earlier) now support always listen Google Now when the screen is on (but not while your phone is sleeping) I use it on my Nexus 5, works well, and there's no noticeable battery drain because of the DSP in the 800

15. AlikMalix unregistered

Yeah, that's what I thought...When I saw MotoX "ok google" for the first time - I was jelous... They brought that to iPhone with next iOS, and so far I use it specifically to text and navigate music if the phone is not on me - the biggest downside to this on iOS is the phone has to be charging at the moment - it's nice that I dont have to worry about disabling the "always listening mode" everytime I take it off charge if I want to extend battery life - but there are seldom moments that it woulda been nice to "keep listening" even when not charging... Hopefully apple figures out how to keep "always listening" ON without the hit on the battery. The MotoX user I know actually has it disabled to extend battery life - but it's still nice to have the option... +1 to Android for this one... Great Feature!

13. Arthurhkt

Posts: 723; Member since: Apr 19, 2012

Yup, so far Google now provide me the best search result, fast and accurate (so far), but i do love the answer given by Cortana, it feel more human, Google now provide good answer but with plain lifeless-like tone

16. AlikMalix unregistered

I agree, I tell Siri to "Google" for most of information, but tell Siri to search Bing for images and videos. Granted YouTube is a better archive, but the commercials are getting longer to wait sometimes and too often.

11. Arthurhkt

Posts: 723; Member since: Apr 19, 2012

Too bad it is quite difficult for us to get Moto X series in Malaysia, even if we manage to get it the price is much more expensive, but i do love to try out their voice-assistant function

12. CableTelcontar

Posts: 94; Member since: Nov 19, 2014

I feel you. None of them even understand our accents here in Africa...and we got a ton of different accents here

17. AlikMalix unregistered

Hey, I know a lady here from South Africa, she has a heavy bit of British accent and something else mixed in.. When I introduced her to Siri (she bought an iPhone, she already had a Mac) she had trouble with Siri understanding, but I instructed to keep at it: Siri Learns... I'm of Eastern European Native and it was the same with my accent - I really wanted Siri to work great when I got the 5S, for the last year or so Siri understands me perfectly, and all of non-American names, I even taught some of the slang that she texts properly from my homeland instead of "finding best matching english words" iOS 8 brought dictation and with it many languages - including my native, which because a big thing among the community I'm in - it was accurate from the start. So, I'd see if your native language is available, at least to take notes and text.. Google has been talking about (or already has done it) where you can choose 5 languages that you can switch back and forth as you talk and it will understand and write in that language - maybe they already have accents worked out as well... This whole Voice Assistants tech is evolving fast and breaking barriers with each new update (android or ios or windows or others)

19. DnB925Art

Posts: 1168; Member since: May 23, 2013

Yeah it's great that the voice assistants can be trained with constant use. Google Now does the same thing, especially when pronouncing some Spanish words where I live, because here in California we have and use a ton of Spanish words as place names, people's names, etc. Even my last name is Spanish and it recognizes it perfectly because it was trained from listening to me saying it.

2. GeorgeDao123

Posts: 432; Member since: Aug 20, 2013

It should have been done for years. Anyway, late is still better than never.

14. vincelongman

Posts: 5692; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

Agreed, And there's still now way to block specific new sources

8. steelew

Posts: 219; Member since: Jun 04, 2012

Just let Nova launcher have access to swipe right and open google now. I know you can install add-ons or use the gestures built into Nova but its not the same.

20. DnB925Art

Posts: 1168; Member since: May 23, 2013

I think on some phones you can enable it to listen even from the home screen/screens. On my Note 4, I can say "OK Google" from the homescreen. On the MotoX phones, you can do it even with the phone in sleep mode as well.

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