The smartphone personal assistant war is heating up, with Google Now for Android taking Siri for iOS head-on. During the Grammy awards on Sunday, Google aired an advertisement for Google Now on the Nexus 4, focusing particularly on the application.
Google Now has been rated highly by pundits, and has received praise with Popular Science naming it the “Innovation of the Year” for 2012. We could see this as the first case of an app selling a smartphone, not a smartphone selling itself with amazing specifications and pixels.
Smartphones are becoming increasingly similar in performance across the board and having the most pixels and fastest processor is not an advantage anymore. Users are going to be spoiled for choice in 2013 with more operating systems being released than you can throw a stick at. Because in real terms it’s not the clever mobile devices that are making our lives easier, but the applications that accompany these devices.
A favourite among Jelly Bean users, Google Now is praised for being intuitive and adapting, over time, to a specific user’s needs. With its Chromium open source web browser project, the Mountain View, California-based company is pushing ahead with a score of experiments and ideas. The advert pushes that idea home, showing off how reminders like the weather, Google Now translation features, public transport schedules and local guides will make life easier.
This could be just the kick that the Nexus 4 needs, as the smartphone has been beset with problems after its launch. The device has seen high demand faltered by slow production and low availability, even prompting Google’s United Kingdom and Ireland Managing Director Dan Cobley, to apologise saying that “supplies from the manufacturer are scarce and erratic, and our communication has been flawed.”