Google Now has been available to Android phones for several months now, and it has finally arrived for the iPhone and iPad. Described as “the right information at just the right time”, Google Now is the latest feature found within the Google Search app. Once you sign into your Gmail account, “Cards” will appear at the bottom that provide helpful info like local weather, currency conversion when travel abroad, traffic conditions to your next likely destination, sports scores, flight status and much more.
After nearly three months when it was first announced by Google, the Google Search app for iOS has been updated with significantly improved voice search functionality. Like Apple’s Siri, users will now get answers spoken back, along with a page of web results – just as if you had typed the query out yourself. Upon tapping the microphone button at the bottom of the screen and making your voice search, the app quickly displays the query text and results are returned almost instantly. In many cases, I’ve found it faster than Siri. As per Google blog, here are some questions you can ask:
For those who you who don’t have an iPhone 4S (or the new iPad with iOS 6) and feel left out with not being able to converse with Siri, you’ll soon be able to do many of the same things that Apple’s digital assistant is able to. Along with Google’s announcement today that Knowledge Graph will be making its way outside the US, and the introduction of the Gmail in personal search results feature, the Big G has made it known that the Google Search app for iOS will be updated soon and it’ll include voice-based questions and answers.
Searching for images on Google via your iPad (and other tablets) is now easier and faster thanks to the newly implemented image carousel feature. Now when you Google search images, you can tap on any thumbnail to reveal the carousel view, where you can swipe left/right to browse between images. Tap on the url beneath the the image and it’ll take you directly to corresponding website. This feature for the iPad was first seen in the recently updated Google Search app, and it’s certainly a welcome addition to Google’s mobile site for tablets.
The Google Search app has been updated and it’s now better than ever on the iPad. The new features make searching for what you want much more interactive and easier as well. Google Instant starts displaying results as you’re typing the search term; a slide-in pane lets you slide back and forth between browse pages and results; visual search history can be accessed by swiping right to reveal snapshots of pages you’ve visited (organized by search terms), and more. Here’s the full list of “What’s New” for the iPad:
✓ See search results and websites side-by-side to quickly browse pages and results
✓ Swipe through the image carousel to see image results in full-size
✓ Compare search results as webpage snapshots in Instant Previews mode
✓ Use Google Instant and search suggestions to get to search results faster
✓ Revisit past searches with Visual Search History
✓ Highlight what you want to see on a webpage with the new Find button
✓ Easily share pages and +1 sites
✓ Quick access to other Google apps like Gmail, Calendar, Docs and more
After even the first few minutes of using Google Search on the iPad, the slide-in pane feature alone made it difficult for me to go back to Safari. The downside is that since it wasn’t designed to be a full fledged browser, the app doesn’t support tabbed browsing. Still, for day-to-day googlin’ on the iPad, the host of new features definitely makes this a keeper. Check out the video demo after this space.
Google, Google Search, – Free