Google updates Now on Tap with useful Holiday search features


The holidays are a busy time of year and with less than 10 days before Christmas, some people probably need all the technological help they can get to ensure the next week-and-a-half goes smoothly.

With that in mind, Google has added a few new features to its Now on Tap contextual concierge search service that Android 6.0 Marshmallow users will likely find useful, especially over the next few weeks.

Picking up a friend or family member from the airport? If you have their flight number, simply tap and hold your smartphone’s home button with the flight number highlighted, and the status will display automatically, all without needing to perform a separate search. Your text message conversation is also still on the screen, sitting just under Now on Tap’s overlay, allowing you to still quickly respond.

If you’re the type of person who does most of their Christmas shopping online, but maybe ordered some of your gifts a little too late, this next feature will likely be very useful for you. Tapping and holding the home button on confirmation emails now displays tracking info as well as the status of your package, all without leaving Gmail.

Furthermore, tapping and holding links now opens up related articles, so if you’re on a Serial binge, you can easily find content related to this week’s episode. Sharing anything discovered via Now on Tap can also be preformed by selecting the service’s new share button.

While the amount of compatible content Now on Tap launched with was relatively lacklustre, it seems Google plans to continuously add new features to its virtual assistant, making it significantly more useful with each subsequent update.