Google updates Search app with expanded Google Now features for Jelly Bean users

Daniel Bader

October 30, 2012 11:41am

While the number of Jelly Bean users is growing at a steady trickle, Google is priming the pipes for a veritable flood with the Nexus 4 and Nexus 10. Alongside the announcement of Android 4.2 Jelly Bean, Google is adding to its Google Now repertoire, bringing a few excellent new cards to the proverbial table.

Google Now has always towed the line of privacy, but with this latest update it definitely crosses it. You must give it permission to scan your Gmail content for airline ticket confirmations, hotel bookings, package deliveries, restaurant reservations and event notices. That being said, we already trust Google with so much of our personal information, and the benefits certainly seem to outweigh the risks.

There’s also a new card that shows “photo spots” and attractions nearby, for those budding phototourists.

New in voice commands is the ability to launch apps, schedule meetings and check upcoming appointments. All things considered, a pretty sizeable, and appreciated, update to Google Now. Existing users of Android 4.1 can download the app and get these new features now.

Download Google Search for Android.

  • January

    Have you seen it in Canada? I have updated, and double checked that I’m using English – US language, but no options for searching my gmail. The package notices and birthday etc would be great, but I’m not seeing the options for it in Settings. Thanks!

    • YeahOk

      Under Settings, its under the Google Now settings, then scroll to the bottom. They’re there.

  • artstate

    Their OS update cycles are getting rather messy… At least they are making an effort to bring some of the new functionality to other versions. Jelly Bean is still relatively rare on phones though

  • Dave

    The Gmail integration is only available for US English. If you use UK English (or any other language), you won’t see any of those options yet.

    I prefer UK English for its spellings (and for the British-accented male voice in Search), so I’m hoping they’ll add support soon.

  • drone

    When do we get hardware functions? ie Turn Wifi, Bluetooth On/Off.