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Google Now Widget

Google Now Widget Finally Makes its Way to Android


We’ve heard rumors about updates coming to Google Now, especially in the form of a widget. This sounded like a novel idea and one which would go a long way in making things simpler and easier for users to operate. And here it is finally, after numerous speculations about its arrival and how it will make way to the Android system. The widget has made its way to Jelly Bean now with an update to the Google Search app. The widget leaked and revealed its existence prematurely, but nothing excites us more than getting the real thing confirmed. Users basically can choose what information to show on their homescreen, and select specific cards. So say you want to know the traffic and directions along with sports scores and weather, you can select these data.

Also available with the Google Search update is the ability to check real estate listings with Zillow. Another cool feature now is that when a user books tickets via Fandango, it alerts users when it is time for the movie. Also, when Google realizes that you’ve actually reached the location, Fandango will open up a virtual ticket for you to confirm your booking at the counter. Some updates have been made to Google Movies as well, where users can read reviews from Rotten Tomatoes for a movie they’re about to watch/rent. This one is certainly something to look forward to and we like the direction in which this is heading. This update is very significant for Android on the whole as it improves on several cool features which existed already. Let’s hope the updates never stop coming as long as new features make its way to the system.

This comes hot on the heels of the Android 4.2.2 update which is currently being rolled out to all Nexus devices beginning with the Galaxy Nexus. During the rumored arrival of Android 5.0 at the Google I/O developer event in May, I guess we can see a lot of new improvements made to the system. Especially with the way Android works and operates with the user. Nexus device owners will have absolutely nothing to worry about as these users will get the update first before anyone else. So if you don’t own a Nexus device, this might be the right time to get it. But given the kind of stock issues Google is seeing, it might not be an entirely bad idea to with the Samsung Galaxy Nexus. Or perhaps wait until the Google I/O event to see if there’s going to be an X-Phone after all.

Source: Google
Via: Pocketnow

Google Now Widget Could be in the Works


Smartphones these days stretch beyond the realms of just phone calls/messaging and internet. There’s so much more these devices can do these days, which would have been rather impossible to think about back in the day. One such thing is voice integration, which has been available since the past few years actually. It’s only recently that it got substantially better and Apple was the one to start off with the introduction of Siri for the iPhone 4S back in 2011. However, Google wasn’t much behind as almost a year later in June 2012, the company introduced something known as Google Now. This basically combined the search capabilities of Google and bundled it in an intuitive and highly usable package. The best thing about Google Now is how it interacts with the device and provides quality information within a matter of seconds. Google showed off its prowess in a brief advertisement yesterday and reminded us why the Nexus 4 is what it is.

And now it is being reported that Google Now could see increased implementation in the form of a dedicated widget possibly with the next version of Android. This widget has been mentioned on Google’s support site, almost confirming its existence. This widget could be more refined and improved compared to how the service is accessed now and could go a long way in making lives that much better. Personally, to have a widget on my homescreen which gives me live updates on the weather or sports scores or stock market prices is something really awesome. But there’s a flipside to this which is the battery life. We fear the battery life will take a heavy beating with live widgets like these which keep updating in real time. Of course, Google will find a way to make it less troublesome for the users in the long run.

So the next big question is, when will we see it hit Android devices? Well we’re hoping it will be a stock Android feature breaking cover with Android 5.0 in May and should eventually make its way to other Android smartphones as well. We don’t see any big updates of Jelly Bean coming up now, so this feature is probably reserved for the next major release of Android. We cannot rule out the possibility of Google making this available as a downloadable widget from the Play Store either. Regardless, this feature is certainly on the cards and we should see it make its way to Android fairly soon. An alleged image of the widget looks very interesting and it shows exactly how it can be used. Unfortunately, Jelly Bean is still slowly rolling out on many smartphones, so not everybody has had a whiff of Google Now.

What do you think of this new widget? Let us know in the comments box below.

Source: Google Support
Via: Phone Arena