At the Search Marketing Expo conference in Paris, Google has announced its latest addition to Google Now in the form of a geocontextual search function known as Location Aware Search.
The added functionality provides you answers to search queries in context to your real time location. It is capable of understanding your geographical location as well as recognizing nearby landmarks without you having to specify an address or name a place.
With Location Aware Search, the idea is to provide users with more accurate and better tailored search answers. Users located near landmark buildings can ask questions such as “what is this place?” or “how tall is this building?”, resulting in Google using their location to recognize the building and understand what they mean by “this”.
Though, the feature is only useful to those who have allowed access to their location data, as it is entirely dedicated to providing localized information. Some of the other known search queries that Google’s Location Aware Search feature can answer are as follows:
- What is this museum?
- When does this restaurant open?
- What’s the name of this church?
- When was this built?
- What’s the phone number for this pharmacy?
The feature isn’t perfect by any stretch, however, and may not work well under all situations. That said, it’s bound to evolve with the passage of time and eventually be capable of answering more complex queries.
While no further official information relating to the feature is available at this point, it is now reportedly active on the Google Now app for many users in the US. Meanwhile, some users outside of the US have also confirmed the availability of Location Aware Search in their respective regions.