Let’s face it. Google probably knows you better than anyone else, including your own mother. That shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone. What might be surprising is the fact that the humble Google Search app (or specifically, the Google Now on tap app) is now becoming more than that. It reminds us of upcoming trips, shows us relevant articles based on topics it knows we’re interested in, gives us live score updates of the sports team we follow and also shows us performances of stocks that we’ve shortlisted.
Oh, this is besides the reminders that we can manually ask it to remember. These reminders can not only be triggered at a certain time but also at certain places. Places where Google has higher chances of accurately tracking since it has the biggest load of information on all the streets and highways of the world.
It began with Google I/O 2015
When Google Now project manager Aparna Chennapragada introduced it to the world at Google I/O 2015, it was nice to see how aware they’ve made the product. During her presentation, she noted
We understand more than 100 million places. Not just their physical layout and geometry, but also interesting things like when are they busy, when are they open, and what are you likely to need when you’re there.
The quaint Search app from Google has effectively replaced the reminders, to-do, news, stocks, sports team and even the weather apps. The only reason I’d install any additional apps for one of the above, is to get more functionality out of these. Admittedly, we’re asking a lot out of a search app if we say that it can definitely replace all such apps. But, the roadmap is being laid out slowly and surely.
Killing some apps, not all
If you’re reading this article as an app developer, there’s no need to be alarmed. One of the primary reasons why the modern smartphone has become so popular so quickly is because of the potential of third party apps. And Google realises this too.
However, this happened stopped them from imagining a future Android device where apps might not be the core of the user experience but an added feature that can be invoked when needed. The idea behind the implementation appears to be quite straight forward – for people who own a vehicle of their own, using the Uber app is probably once in a month affair. For those who cook at home, Zomato is needed only when you want to try something new. It’s the same story with many such apps.
Better integration with other Google products (like Calendar, Gmail, Maps and more) have allowed the humble Search app to be more versatile than simply searching the web for answers to your questions. And maybe you haven’t noticed its presence on your phone but it’s only a matter of time when you do.
We’d like to know if you feel the same about the Google Search app. Or if you’re now installing lesser number of apps because of the convenience of Google Search.