Google Now, the mind-reading personal assistant for iOS and Android, has gotten a ton of updates lately, making it the perfect smartphone companion for…well, anything. Here’s a list of the coolest stuff it can do.Google Now does a ton of awesome stuff, and it’s releasing new features all the time. For an up to date list of what it can do—and how to enable the different cards—check out Google’s list of cards available in Now (and a list of some services it integrates with).
You spend a lot of time driving (or riding transit) between work, events, seeing friends, and everything else. Google Now can make it a lot easier. If you enter your work address in its settings, it’ll always let you know how long it’ll take to get there, so you don’t get unexpectedly caught in traffic. It supports driving and public transit, and will even remember where you parked or tell you when the last train leaves. You can even share your commute with your family and friends, so they can check up on when you’re getting home.
Google Now is awesome, but as customization nuts (like us) might expect, it’s not exactly the… Read moreRead on You probably already know about this one, since it’s been there since the beginning. By entering your favorite sports teams and most-followed stocks in Now’s settings, you can get an update on how your team is winning, how your stocks are plummeting, or vice versa. It’ll also track stocks you’ve searched for and ones you’re tracking on Google Finance. If you’re leaving town, Google Now knows it—and can provide you with a ton of useful information. If you’re flying, it’ll keep track of your flight (using information from your email confirmation), let you know when to leave the airport, and have your boarding pass ready for you when you get there. It’ll also help you out with hotel information, car rentals, show you nearby places and events, photo spots, and—if you’re out of the country—even provide you with cards for translation and currency conversion. Basically, any time you’re out of town, pull up Google Now and it’ll have everything you might need at the ready. If you have Location Reporting and Location History enabled on your phone, Google Now will pop up a card once a month that estimates how far you’ve walked or biked, based on your phone’s accelerometer (Android only). Just remember: if you have these features enabled, that means Google is logging everywhere you go, so make sure you’re comfortable with that before you turn it on. You probably already know that Google Now will provide tracking information for packages you’ve ordered online. But it also helps you shop in the real world, too. If you walk into a mall, it’ll tell you what stores are available, and if you’ve researched a product recently, it’ll even tell you if you’re near a store that carries it. Talk about handy! When you search for a movie, book, TV show, music artist, or video game on Google, it’ll remember—and give you information about it in Google Now. You can even tell Google to remind you about upcoming episodes, so you know when your favorite shows start. If you head into Now’s Customize menu, you can tell it your cable provider and on demand services (like Netflix and Hulu) and it’ll adjust its cards for those services.If you have an network-connected TV, things get even more interesting. Google Now will detect your TV and you can tell it to “listen” to what you’re watching. It’ll then provide you with more information about that show. If you have a concert or other event coming up—and you were emailed the ticket—Google Now will remind you of the event, tell you when to leave, and give you one-tap access to the email with your tickets. It also integrates with Fandango so you can scan the tickets right from Google Now. You probably know that Google Now will give you information on things you’ve recently searched, but it can do more than that. It’ll also alert you of breaking news, storm warnings, other important things. Plus, you can tell it to keep you up to date on certain people or let you know when your favorite blog updates with a new post. As if all the above weren’t enough, you can tell Google Now to remind you of just about anything, right when you need it the most. Bring up Google Now and tell it to remind you of something at a certain time, or when you reach a certain location. For example, you could have it “Remind me to call Mom in an hour” or “Remind me to take out the trash when I get home.” If you have events in Google Calendar, it’ll remind you when they’re happening—and, if they have a location, when you should leave to get there on time. It’ll even remind you when you have bills you need to pay. With Google I/O’s many announcements came a long awaited feature. Reminders. For the longest… Read moreRead on Of course, Google Now does most of the above on its own, but you can ask it just about anything and get a smart answer, too. Google Now’s voice commands can do anything from make conversions to defining words to telling you who the president of the United States is. Here are some examples of awesome stuff you can ask it, and here’s an infographic of the different commands it can answer to, like calling people, navigating you somewhere, or playing music from a certain artist. Voice search is one of those features that seems silly, but is awesome once you start using it. Not … Read moreRead onThere are a ton of cool things you can do with Google Now, but with Google constantly adding more… Read moreRead on Android: Today, Google updated its Search app to add a new card that will remember where you parked your car. Additionally, while previous versions… Read more Android: Google Now is our favorite virtual assistant for Android, and now it’s even better. Google unveiled several new cards, including one… Read more You probably know your phone can pinpoint your location for GPS, local search, or the weather. Hopefully, you also know that means your phone keeps… Read more When you go to a mall, finding a list of stores can sometimes be tough. Google Now is finally offering an easy fix for that. Read more Google Now has gotten a lot of new features today, and it isn’t slowing down. Now, it can tell you if you’re near a store that carries a… Read more