There is a new Google Search update rolling out, and it's bringing a bunch of new functionality to Google Now. There are new cards for car rentals, concert tickets, commute sharing, NCAA football, updated transit, new TV info, and better reminders. It's like we're drowning in cards here.
Here's the full list of new and improved cards from the official Android Google+ account:
- Car rentals card: Get reservation details and directions to the rental center directly in Google Now, which together with the boarding pass and hotel reservation cards, makes Google Now your ultimate travel companion.
- Concert ticket card: Going to a concert? Google Now will have your event ticket ready when you arrive at the venue; along with popular, locally relevant websites, such as the upcoming events page for the venue.
- Improved public transit cards: If you regularly take public transit, Google Now will now inform you about the last train or bus to home so you never miss it.
- Commute sharing card: When leaving work, you can now choose to inform your loved ones that you are on your way home. Learn more at http://goo.gl/bVUkLY
- Set reminders while you search: When searching for music artists, movie actors, filmmakers and TV shows on Google, you’ll see a new “remind me” button on the panel by the search results. Click on it and a Google Now reminder will show up for new albums, book releases or upcoming TV episodes.
- Updated TV card: Google Now can tell you about the news mentioned and music playing in the TV show you’re watching, in addition to program information and people mentioned in show. Simply tap on the TV card if you have a smart TV or tap on the mic and say "listen to TV”.
- NCAA football scores: Football season is about to start, and Google Now has you covered--you can now see real-time scores for your favorite NCAA team in Google Now.
A lot of this, like the car rental and concert ticket cards, will likely rely on pulling data from Gmail. The new reminders will be based entirely on what you're searching for.
The commute sharing sounds kind of magical, but setup is weird. You can enable it by going into the Google Now traffic settings and turn on commute updates. Then add people under the "Choose who can see your location using Google+" setting. In Google+ the pinpoint location section is the one you need to add your trusted folks to. Yeah, it's kind of convoluted, but neat. It's also worth pointing out that our former compatriot Ron Amadeo spotted some of this in an APK teardown back in June.
As with all updates these days, the new version is rolling out slowly. You'll get it when you get it. You'll need Android 4.1 or higher to make use of Google Now, of course.
Update: Here's the APK (v18.104.22.1689824, Android 4.1+, 14,872,254 bytes - thanks, Alberto!).