More Signs of Android's Google Now Built into Chrome

The new rich notifications are now enabled in Chromium

Google Now is one of the standout features in the latest Android and it's a glimpse at the future of search as Google sees it. You can search from it, of course, like you have for more than a decade and you can do voice searches, but those aren't new either.

The app also pushes information, it notifies you of weather conditions if you're going out, flights when you need to travel, traffic conditions when you commute and so on, that's the big change.

It can be much more than that of course, but Google has big plans for it and it also plans to move it beyond Android. There are signs that Google Now, or at least some components, specifically the Google Now cards, will be built into Chrome.

Now, in the most recent Chromium builds, there's a new Notification Center along with a new type of notifications that look purpose-built for cards, as Chrome fan François Beaufort noticed.

Granted, they can and will be used by apps and websites for richer notifications, compared to what's possible now in Chrome.

But it's clear that Google plans to use them for Now cards. It will be interesting to see now Now evolves, by becoming a bigger part of Android, as Google gains confidence in the feature, and by expanding to the desktop making it a lot more visible.

You can check out the new rich notifications by grabbing the latest Chromium build for Windows and turning on "Enable Rich Notifications" in chrome://flags.

You'll only see the new notification template, not Google Now cards, but it's an idea of what it will look like. The feature has just landed, but it should end up in the Chrome dev channel and be enabled for other platforms soon enough. Google Now for Chrome will probably take longer though.

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