Google Now scans your email inbox, calendar, and can even keeps tabs on where you go. It’s a scary proposition, but one that pays off in the form of information at your fingertips.
The service has long been available on the Android platform, and a partial version was ported to iOS users via an app. By scanning your email, Google Now can tell you if your flight is on time, when a package will arrive, or when you need to head to the airport to catch your flight. It can also inform you of commute times to regularly visited locations, including your work, gym, and home. The service is opt in and on select handsets it’s not more than a button or swipe away.
And now the very same service is coming to Google’s core and original product, search. Just simply type or ask Google search – you’ll need to be logged in – and within seconds it will be able to update you on the status on:
- Flights: Ask Google “Is my flight on time?” to get info on your upcoming flights and live status on your current flights.
- Reservations: Ask for “my reservations” to see your dining plans or “my hotel” to get your hotel name and address. With one tap, you can get driving or public transit directions straight there, saving you lots of steps.
- Purchases: Ask for “my purchases,” and you’ll get the status of your current orders, so you know whether your mom’s birthday present will arrive on time.
- Plans: Ask Google “What are my plans for tomorrow?” to see a summary of upcoming flights, hotels, restaurant reservations and events—very useful when you’re traveling.
- Photos: Say “Show me my photos from Thailand” to see the photos you uploaded to Google+. You can also ask for “my photos of sunsets” if you want to show off the shots you’ve taken over the year; Google will try to automatically recognize the type of photo you’re asking for.
Google says more services, or as they call it “time savers” will become available in due time. Moreover, this feature will be only available to English speaking users, at least for the foreseeable future.