Google’s Siri competitor is now available for the iPhone and iPad. Though it cannot replace Siri on your iOS device (wouldn’t that be nice!), Google Now is up for download on the App Store. The app will let you make traditional voice searches, but also tries to predict what you might want to know in the future. For example, cards may pop up in the app to suggest nearby restaurants you might like, the day’s weather forecast, transit directions, flight delays, sports scores of your favorite teams, stock information, and other nuggets of data.
Sound cool? Yes, but don’t get too excited. Like Siri, Google Now still has many limitations and will often screw up your searches. We don’t yet have a perfect voice companion, and we may not for a while. Still, it’s good to see Google embracing iOS and continuing to port more of its applications and services to Apple’s devices. The debut of Google Maps couldn’t have been more welcomed last year after Apple botched the release of its own mapping and turn-by-turn navigation app. Google+ is also available for iOS.
Sadly, due to the way Apple embeds Siri into iOS, you will not be able to swap out the service for Google Now. That means, at least for the time being, holding down the Home button on your iPhone or iPad will not open Now.
As with all apps recently launched in the App Store, it may be difficult to find Google Now through a traditional search while iTunes updates the results. Save yourself some time and download via this link.