Google Now text functionality available for all Android devices using Google Talk

October 18, 2012
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There hasn’t been much to dislike about Android’s Jelly Bean set of tweaks, improvements and enhancements, but if we had to choose just one new feature to take with us on a deserted island we would probably all go for Google Now.

Compared by many with Apple’s Siri, but proven to be much more intuitive, comprehensive and intelligent in a number of face-offs, the personal assistant is unfortunately still available to only a handful of Android users on JB and ICS.

While making Google Now’s full functionality work on older Android devices has proven an incredibly tough challenge even for the very skilled independent dev community, you can now finally enjoy part of the functions through… Google Talk.

That’s right, all you need is good ol’ GTalk and you’re ready to go. Now don’t think you can start talking with the instant messaging service and a magical hack will make it talk back to you. However, if you add the “magical” guru@googlelabs.com contact to your list, you will be able to issue text commands and get quick and accurate text responses.

The “pseudo Google Now” should work fine on any mobile device running Gingerbread, Froyo or even older versions of Android, as well as on PCs and whatever other gizmos support Google Talk right now.

I’ve taken the liberty to compile a list of the commands supported so far, all of which seem to be working fine and smooth, save for the score function, which only covers football as far as I can tell. Enjoy!

  • Weather: Tells you the current weather on defined location
  • Score: Search the score of a specified team
  • Define: Dictionary
  • Translate: Translator
  • Web: Google search
  • Calculate: Adds, subtracts, multiplies and divides numbers

 

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