Now What? All About Google’s New Product
While Siri is great, there is one platform that performs exceedingly better, and that’s Google Now. Without delving too far into the particulars, both platforms can launch various actions through the use of simple voice commands. In the future, Google Now will actually be expanded to work on desktop computers through the Google Chrome browser, whereas Siri will likely stay mobile.
There are lots of questions floating around out there about Google’s voice assistant platform. Why is Google Now considered by many to be better than Siri? What can consumers do with it exactly? How can marketers use the platform?
Why is Google Now Considered Better Than Siri?
In the grand scheme of things, voice assistant apps and services accomplish nearly the same things. Through voice activation you can perform various actions like sending a text message, starting an internet search, launching a local app, and even setting calendar appointments. All you have to do is activate the service, say the necessary phrase and wait for the voice assistant to do its thing.
Google Now is a lot more expansive when it comes to functionality. Unlike Siri, it does not include a digital curator or voice to compliment your actions. Instead of announcing a response to you, it simply performs the commanded action and returns the results. In addition, the Google Now interface includes informative “cards” which are tailored to your past queries and actions. For example, if you have a habit of checking baseball scores, Google Now will deliver current scores on a personalized card.
The necessary voice commands are more natural too, making it a lot easier to get the correct answers from Google Now. Siri is notorious for giving people the wrong answers and performing the wrong actions. Still, Google Now is not perfect and it’s definitely capable of making mistakes here and there.
How Can Consumers Use Google Now?
Google Now for Android is remarkably simple. There are several ways you can call upon it, all of which require little to no interaction from the user. Once Google Now is open, the sky is the limit. Actions you can perform using voice commands include making phone calls, sending text messages, looking up directions, setting personal reminders and alerts, asking questions (which are sent through a search engine query), scheduling meetings, playing music or movies, and more.
All you have to do is speak the action you want to complete along with the corresponding information. For instance, let’s say I want to send a text message to my significant other that says “I love you.” All I have to do is say “Okay Google Now, send text to [name] I love you.” The platform will complete the action, set the receiving contact and either allow me to edit the entered information or send it directly from within the main UI.
Why is that so special? You can quickly perform actions, launch web queries and more without using your hands. That means you can use Google Now to stay hands-free while driving. There are a lot of similar uses for such an application, but you get the gist of it.
How Can Marketers Use Google Now?
It’s still going to be a while before marketers can actually take advantage of Google Now. The platform doesn’t yet serve up any proprietary ads, nor is it really tailored to forms of general marketing or self-promotion. That being said, there is one very important element to Google’s voice assistant platform that may prove more useful in the long run.
In order to accurately deliver the personalized cards and information, Google Now must collect data about how people are using their devices. Of course, users do have the option to disable monitoring and usage tracking if they don’t feel comfortable with it. That being said, the tracking has to be on if they want to take advantage of Google Now.
Unfortunately, marketers cannot directly use the tracking functionality to their advantage, but they can however use it to make their business or brand stand out more. Just like with a search engine, Google Now uses a special algorithm to deliver relevant content to users. It combines local (location) results with standard keyword queries. That’s how, when a user searches for mortgage servicing solutions, Google Now pulls up all the local businesses that offer them instead of locations many states away.
Marketers can actually use Google Now to get a brand right in front of potential customers, especially when it launches on desktop computers.