After Google had recently debuted the Google Now search feature in its latest television commercial, it’s been recently discovered that Google Now may soon be coming to an Android near you in widget form. The widget appears to be very simple and minimalist in appearance, showing a box with three smaller boxes to display information like the commute time to work, local weather, and a stock quote. Tapping on each individual box would bring up the Google Now card for that item.
While it may not be much simpler than launching Google Now directly on your phone, it does give quick access to the most important cards as Google Now sometimes display additional cards or hides the cards that you don’t need if you’ve recently already accessed them. This keeps the basic information always visible via the widget on your home screen.
According to Android Central, reference for the widget was discovered via Google’s documentation for Android. The Verge confirmed the reference in documentation for the Nexus 4, Nexus 10, and the Galaxy Nexus. In a slight twist, it was not referenced or mentioned in documentation for the Nexus 7 tablet, but that may be an error of omission on Google’s part rather than excluding the feature on the popular 7-inch slate. The site also did some research and found that the references for the widget were not present on cached pages on Google’s support site “as recently as February 2nd.”
It’s unclear at this point if the widget will be a downloadable update for existing Android devices via the Google Play Store, or if it’s baked into the OS and will require an Android software update for users to get the widget feature.
Currently, Google Now requires Android 4.1 or above to operate.