For folks who don’t already know, Google Now is kind of like a virtual personal assistant – someone who follows you around and reminds you what to do and when to do it. Basically, Google Now does everything except kiss you good morning. And they’re probably working on an app for that, too.
Actually, there are more than 10 Google Now features mentioned in this article. But hey, I didn’t pick the title.
Instead of just choosing 10 random Google Now features by “cool factor” (Okay, I admit there is some “cool factor” selectivity going on; I left out the cards that had to do with boring stuff like reminders to take out the trash and go to doctors’ appointments), I clumped several Google Now cards into each of ten types of activities, like traveling, shopping, night life, and so on.
So in reality, you’re getting more bang for your buck in this article.
Hope you find it useful!
1. For Commuters:
Enter your work address, and Google Now’s Traffic & Transit Card will calculate the exact time it will take for you to drive to work and tell you about any traffic delays. You can also share your commute with friends and family so that they can check up on you. If you take public transportation, the Public Transit Card tells you what bus and train stations are near your location and the corresponding departure times.
2. For Travelers:
Google Now’s Flights Card tells you what time to leave home in order to get to the airport 90 minutes early…and the nice thing is, you don’t even have to manually enter this information; Google Now pulls it from your confirmation email and calculates your commute time. The Boarding Pass Card stores the QR code from your boarding pass for scanning at the gate, and the Hotels Card stores your hotel’s location, contact information, and check-in times. If you’re traveling in another country, Google Now even offers a Translation Card and a Currency Card.
3. For Online Shoppers:
If you ordered something and it is being shipped to you, Google Now’s Packages Card tells you what you ordered, from whom you ordered it, what time it shipped (down to the minute!) and its estimated arrival time. You can even track your package or view your confirmation email from this card.
4. For Sportsaholics:
Google Now’s Sports Card allows you to keep track of how your favorite team is doing at a glance, even if you can’t be there to watch in person.
5. For Stock Market Players:
Stock market investors can track their investments, based on stocks you’ve searched for or are tracking on Google Finance, using Google Now’s Stocks Card.
6. For Fitness Geeks:
If you have an Android phone and have enabled Location Reporting and Location History enabled, Google Now will pop up an Activity Summary Card that estimates how many miles you’ve walked or biked in the last month.
7. For Night Lifers:
If you have made reservations at a restaurant, Google Now’s Restaurant Reservations Card will pop up a reminder to tell you the name of the restaurant, its address, the time of your reservation, how long it will take you to walk there from your current location, and even offer you directions. If you’ve purchased tickets to a movie, concert, or other event, you’ll receive similar kid-glove treatment from the Movies Card, Concerts Card or Events Card.
8. For Birthday Forgetters:
Google Now’s Friends’ Birthday Card is a lifesaver for those who are “special event challenged”. If your friend is on Google Plus or is a Gmail contact and has their birthday listed, you’re all set!
9. For Emergencies:
Google Now’s Public Alerts Card keeps track of emergency information from the National Weather Service, U.S. Geological Survey, and other sources. Good for places prone to wildfires, hurricanes, earthquakes, and the like.
10. For TV Show Addicts:
The New TV Episodes Card keeps track of your favorite TV show and lets you know what time the next episode airs. Not into TV? Check out the New Books, New Albums, or even the New Video Games Cards instead.
Now, go out there and enjoy Google Now – now! Now. Now…
Featured photo credit: Google Logo in Building43/Robert Scoble via flickr.com