Google Now has got my back.
So Google Now has been out for months now, and without a doubt it has gotten better and better. It isn't until much recently that I began to truly appreciate the service.
Hurricane Sandy blew through New York and caused much devastation in her wake. Prior to the storm making landfall, Google Now sent out an alert. The notification had useful information like possible wind-speeds and flooding. It also warned that people should stay indoors.
The effects of the storm was devastating. Some people lost power, some lost their homes, and sadly some lost their lives. My family and I live in Westchester NY (U.S.A) and we lost power the day of the storm. It was cold and miserable, but we had each other (we even played charades...).
When we lost power, we lost our phone service and thus communication with the outside world. Luckily there were some places around us with power. Shop owners and even home owners let those without power come in and charge their devices. I was able to charge my Galaxy Nexus and shortly after I turned it on, there was a notification from Google Now. I clicked on the notification, and there was a card showing a map of where to find gas, shelter, and other necessities which were in high demand after the storm. This information was invaluable to my family and I, and I am truly grateful for it.
Recently I have also discovered that when searching for news articles on my computer, Google now is aware and keeps track of this. I opened Google Now to check the weather, and I saw a card providing a news story of something I had searched for earlier. It also knows what day I usually go to the movies and provides a list of movies and showtimes for the closest theatre near me (this card doesn't appear on any other day!). This type of information relevancy is refreshing.
While some may worry about privacy issues (and they have every right to), the information provided by Google Now is nothing short of amazing. It is so much more than a voice assistant. Its ability to predict the information need has turned out to be more impressive than its ability to respond to my queries. I am excited for the future of Google Now, and look forward to what it will bring.