Google Now is a powerfully unique service which allows you to access relevant information, exactly when you need it. Over time, the application will memorize your daily routine, and will eventually offer you useful information about your journey to work, upcoming appointments, and so forth. Google Now used to be a luxury available for Android users only, until now.
On April 29th 2013, Google finally launched its popular Google Now service across iOS devices, via its Google Search app – a move which could change the way you use your iPhone or iPad.
As well as offering you a fast, accessible way to use Google’s search engine, Google Now has the ability to display weather, news, traffic updates, local restaurant information, and much more. All of the information, which is personalised especially for you, is incredibly easy to access and customize.
How to use Google Now for iOS
To install Google Now on your iOS device, head over to its official iTunes download page and begin your installation. Once you have successfully installed the application, you will be greeted with the Google Now welcome screen upon opening the app.
The useful Google Now introduction video is there to be watched and enjoyed if you wish. Once you have watched the video, tap “Next.”
You will then be directed to the next screen, where Google Now asks for permission to store and use things such as your location, calendars, Gmail, and so forth. For the full Google Now experience, tap “Yes, I’m In.”
Your iOS device will the alert you to the fact that Google Now is attempting to use your current location. Simply tap “OK” to continue. Now that you have granted Google Now access, you will be prompted to sign in with your Google account credentials.
Once you have typed in your Google account details, tap “Sign In.” If you do not currently have a Google account, hit “Sign Up” in the upper right-hand corner of the screen in order to set up your account.
After successfully signing in, you will be greeted with the Google Now home screen. This consists of the Google search bar, the option to sign out of your account, as well as the settings button. Using the Google Search app settings, you can customize safe search as well as voice search options.
Additionally, you will see the “Apps” button leading to more Google applications such as Gmail, Google Earth and Youtube, along with “Voice” button, which offers you the ability to search the web using you voice commands, as well as the Google “Goggles” button, which enables you to search via images captured on your iOS device’s camera.
However, the real fun starts when you scroll upwards from the bottom of your iOS screen, thus revealing Google Now.
Initially, Google Now will only display your local weather – as you need to give the application time to learn your routine, as well as analyse your frequent web searches. Eventually, Google Now will begin to show you “cards” which reflect your interests and routines. Cards which can accompany your weather card can include sports updates, public transport information, Gmail notifications, landmark history and more.
In the meantime, tap “Show Sample Cards” to view examples of what your future Google Now feed will consist of.
To customise the contents of your Google Now feed, scroll down your screen and tap the gear button located at the bottom right-hand corner of your screen.
Once you have clicked the gear button, your Google Now settings will be displayed. You can choose to enable and disable Google Now as a whole, or individually select or deselect certain cards which you may not to appear on your Google Now feed.
Once you have made your selections, tap “Done” to return to the Google Now home screen – and enjoy your customized feed.
The good and the bad
Now that Google Now is available on iOS, millions of Apple device owners will be looking to get acquainted with the service. Here is a complete list of the pros and cons of Google’s famous app.
- Google Now can seamlessly fetch you relevant information about a variety of topics including news, sports, transport, locations and more
- Fastest and most convenient way to search the web from your iOS device
- Easily customizable to suit your needs and interests
- The application features voice and image search via Google Goggles, as well as the ability to access other Google services
- If your battery is running low, the app pauses location updates in order to conserve energy
- Google Now is only accessible as a standard app – unlike on Android devices, where it can be viewed via swiping or holding a button whilst viewing any screen
- After signing in using your Google account, Google Now should be able to determine some of your interests via your various Google applications linked to your account. Instead, Google Now requires some time to get to grips with your wants and needs
Google Now is a totally unique service, made even better by the easily accessible personalization options. Although the app cannot be implemented into iOS as seamlessly as it has been on Android, the features are widely similar. Now that it is no longer an Android exclusive luxury, Google Now can drastically change the way you use your iOS device to access relevant information.