Google Now Widget Weirdness

Earlier this week I started using the google now widget on my home screen at the 4x3 size, with a row of app icons as the 4th row. However in doing so, I noticed that the 4x3 widget actually leaves almost a full row of space where it could have a 4th row of cards within its 4x3 grid space. (Previously I used 4x2 sandwiched by rows of app icons, and the 4x2 uses its full allotment of space so I didn't notice) The 4x4 widget demonstrates a similar amount of blank space. (Also, it's not an issue of not having enough cards to fill the space. Depending on the day, one or two rows of the widget are shared by 2 cards) So I figured I'd open up google now and send a report about it. Lo and behold today I look at my home screen, and the 4x3 widget has added a 4th row of cards to maximize its use of the space. Even if I wasn't the first person to report this and it had been in the works for a while, I was still impressed to see something I directly noticed get updated. Having said that, there wasn't an update to the Search app, the only recent update was to play services which was so recent it almost certainly couldn't have included a fix for my report, plus play services wouldn't update the widget anyways, would it?

So my configuration was the row of app icons on top of the widget because the blank space didn't look as bad above the launcher row of icons as it did between the search bar and the widget with the icons at the bottom above the launcher. With the widget now sporting the extra row, I was going to move it to my preferred configuration at the top of the screen (below the search bar) followed by my row of app icons, and then the launcher row. However, when I moved the widget, the extra row disappeared and it was back to having the blank space. Anyone know what's going on?