The last update Wednesday was a quiet one, but Google is picking up steam today with that Play Music update and now Google Search is hitting v3.6. This update should enable deep linking for apps through search, and there's some more movement on hands-free mode. No, it doesn't work yet, but check out the hands-free icons below!
Unfortunately, APKtools crashes trying to decompile this version of search. We managed to get in with JEB, though (Artem paid $1000 cash money for a JEB license). We can tell from the version number that the new update will enable deep linking of indexed app data through the app indexing API—Google's developer docs say it requires v3.6 or higher. This should allow Google to show content from inside an app and link you directly to it if you've got it installed. It relies on developers to implement it, though.
The Google hands-free feature we keep seeing pop up seems to be a little different in 3.6. The prompt you get when trying to call it up is still busted, but it has a different look. The new Search contains a ton of new hands-free resources (plus some strings that refer to it as Kitt), so maybe we're getting close to something. The icons above are certainly a good sign.
There's also a new pop-up warning when you enable OK Google Everywhere that lets you know someone else could use the device without unlocking it, probably in response to this.
Left: old, Right: new
The APK is signed by Google and upgrades your existing app. The cryptographic signature guarantees that the file is safe to install and was not tampered with in any way. Rather than wait for Google to push this download to your devices, which can take days, download and install it just like any other APK.
File name: com.google.android.googlequicksearchbox-126.96.36.1999286.arm.apk.
Version: 188.8.131.529286.arm (Android 4.1+).
[Thanks, Dave Kover]