Google I/O had several important and awesome announcements, but I don’t think any were more impressive (at least from the standpoint of a total geek) than Google Now On Tap. While I’m not a fan of the name, the functionality of this new Google Now features is astounding and I can’t wait to try it out. What is it? Let’s take a look.
So right now, Google Now is made to give you the information you want before you have to go and look for it. While that’s already impressive, Now On Tap makes it even smarter and more useful. It does this by using the context of the apps you’re using to improve search results.
As an example, let’s say you’re listening to music on Spotify or Google Play Music. If a song comes up and you want to know what year it came out in or the album it’s a part of, you can simply ask Google Now (activated by “OK Google keyword”) “When did this come out” or “What album is this song part of” and Now On Tap will automatically figure out what you are referring to and make the search all within a matter of seconds. But that’s only the beginning of Google Now On Tap.
A long press on the home button (unknown how this will work on devices with physical buttons i.e. Samsung) will reveal a few pop up info cards that tie in to what app and information is on screen. So let’s say for example you get a text about dinner and where you want to go, Now On Tap will reveal a nearby or recommended restaurant. It can also determine if you might want to set a reminder based on the on screen information.
Google Now On Tap should work for most apps without any changes on the part of the developer although it will only work on Android M. It’s likely that Now On Tap will be available on the Android M developer preview within the coming weeks or months.