Two new “hidden” features of Google Now that make voice dialing so much easier

Google Now voice search

In the latest update to Google Search, we knew about some very cool things right away: For example, it is now referred to as the “Google Now Launcher,” which could signal that Google is planning a wider release to other Nexus devices, or even other OEM devices. Also, if you sideload the Google Now Launcher on your device, you now get the option to import your app icons and folders over. Additionally, this update brings new animations to bundled cards in Travel, Research, Interests, and Things To Watch.

All very cool.

Now, users have uncovered two more “hidden” features that are just as neat – the ability to assign “relationships” to people in your contacts list, and Google Now’s new ability to respond to the Bluetooth action button available on many Bluetooth devices. Both make voice dialing so much easier.

With the latest update, instead of always having to name names when dialing by voice, you can assign relationships. You can say, for example, “Call my brother,” “call the wife,” or “call my boss,” instead of stating their names. The first time you do this, Google Now will ask you to assign that relationship to your contact, and as time goes on, Google is expected to add even more relationship terms to make this even easier.

Additionally, now that Google Now can directly respond to Bluetooth action buttons that are common on headsets and in-car systems, there is no longer any need to ever deal with Android’s antiquated built-in voice calling system. There is also no longer any need to install a third party app to override that default behavior, since the default is now much more user friendly. Furthermore, on my Nexus 5, I’ve noticed that I can now say “OK Google” on my homescreen while using my Bluetooth, whereas this functionality was previous disabled.

It’s nice to see so many improvements in this update, and I can’t wait to see what else is coming to Google Now in the coming weeks and months.

[Android and Me | Android Police]
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John F

John was the editor-in-chief at Pocketables. His articles generally focus on all things Google, including Chrome and Android, although his love of new gadgets and technology doesn't stop there. His current arsenal includes the Nexus 6 by Motorola, the 2013 Nexus 7 by ASUS, the Nexus 9 by HTC, the LG G Watch, and the Chromebook Pixel, among others.