Google “Now on Tap” Offers Holiday Use Cases Such As Package Tracking, Travel

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The simplest way to describe Google Now on Tap is perhaps “context-driven search.” It’s a way for users to generate more content or information about a subject or item without ever conducting a formal search — or even swiping for Google Now.

Whether in an app, mobile site, email or text message, Now on Tap enables users to obtain additional information without exiting the experience. Now on Tap is activated by holding/pressing the home button. Google has been slowly expanding the use cases.

This week it announced several holiday-related Now on Tap scenarios:

  • Flight number in a text: Simply tap and hold your phone’s home button to get info on flight status without a separate search.
  • Package tracking via email: Tapping and holding on your confirmation email will display tracking info for your package.
  • News: In a news story about a public figure, tap and hold to get links to related articles so you can learn more.
  • In multiple languages: Now on Tap now works in French, German, Spanish, Italian, Russian or Korean.

Google originally introduced “Now on Tap” at its I/O developer conference this year. The feature is live in Android Marshmallow.

Google Now on Tap operates as a kind of “connective tissue” between app experiences on Android. Bing has also introduced a Now on Tap-like capability called Bing Snapshots for Android.

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