Google Now, the real-time search engine and personal assistant application included with recent versions of Android is getting even more features.
Announced yesterday on the official Google Android Blog, following an update, Android users will be able to use Google Now to monitor the latest football scores should they be on the run instead of on the couch watching their favorite NCAA college football teams face each other on the field.
Google is also adding new cards designed to help users who travel frequently or who live in an area where long commutes are an everyday occurrence. With this update, Google Now will automatically collect user’s car rental passes using the new Car Rentals card. Users can also expect large improvements to the public transit cards that allow to track most forms of public transportation.
According to Google, the upgraded public transit cards will now notify users when they are about to miss the last train or bus. Google is also adding a card that will allow users to automatically share information about their expected commute with friends and family.
Google Now will allow users to set reminders for music artists, television shows and more when they search. From that point on the application will automatically inform the user of any new episodes or album releases that surface as part of that search term.
Finally, Google has tweaked the TV card so that users can find out more information about the songs in their favorite television shows, and even get up-to-the-minute information about the news being discussed on-air.
The updated Google Now began rolling out to users with Android 4.1, Android 4.2 and Android 4.3 as an update through the Google Play Store yesterday.
Since introducing Google Now in Android 4.1, Google has consistently updated the service with more features. That fast pace and growing feature set have helped define what it means to use a real-time personal assistant that collects only passive information. As Google Now gathers its information from the user’s Gmail account and GPS location, the barrier to entry is much lower than rival services like voice-activated Siri.
Google Now is also available for iPhone users, however Google didn’t announce any imminent plans to bring these new features to iOS users.