Google Now is a service designed to show you traffic, weather, sports, or other information when you need it most. Google first rolled out Google Now as an Android feature, and it’s tied into the Google Search app for Android phones and tablets.
But there’s mounting evidence that Google Now is coming to the Chrome web browser and Chrome OS.
A few months ago some initial code for Google Now-style information cards showed up in the Chromium web browser source code.
Now developer François Beaufort has found an option to turn on Google Now in the latest builds of the open source version of the Chrome browser. There’s just one catch: You still need to link the browser to Google’s server in order for it to work: and since Google hasn’t publicly unveiled what URL to use, there’s no way for most users to actually try Google Now for Chrome.
Google Now determines what information to show based on some of the information Google gathers about you from your normal usage. For instance if you drive the same route from home to work at about the same time every day, Google Now will figure that traffic reports might be of use. Same goes for public transit schedules if you take the bus or train instead.
Some of those features might seem more useful on a phone than a laptop, but Google Now can also offer weather alerts, flight information, package tracking, birthday alerts and other items — some of which could come in handy whether you’re using a PC or a phone.
You can download the latest Chromium build for Windows from http://download-chromium.appspot.com/ and check out the new flag by typing chrome://flags into the location bar.