If you are using Google Now in India , you would have discovered by now that the use cases for Google Now is minimal.Though public transit information – bus and train timings are pretty decent and works well, the live traffic data as claimed by Google is not pretty accurate. It is calculated based on historical data available.
Weather information in India is good but it is not that much of a priority as people don’t check the weather every day to see if it would snow or rain – it’s always hot in this tropical country. Checking to see if it would be 35 C or 38 C does not make much sense.
Also have you received any movie or train or air tickets as a pop up in Google Now at all ? These features work only in US and few other countries I guess. To make Google Now more relevant for local population since India is a huge market for Android, Google should delegate the work of figuring out what is relevant to respective countries’ Google office since natives of the land would be well informed.
What can Google India do for Google Now ?
1.Manual Traffic Updates:
Google Maps calculate live traffic based on the GPS signals available in smartphones from users and few other signals as well , aggregate and then compute the traffic and it is based on historical data collected over a period of time.It is not helping live traffic. With the acquisition of Waze, Google should now should follow a similar idea of crowdsourcing traffic information and allow users to manually update on traffic status in case of traffic jam. It should be like : Just open Google Now, report traffic and with GPS on , it is easy.It will be bit tricky to filter inaccuracies but again its better than historical data.
2. IRCTC/Book my show or Red Bus e-tickets as alerts .
IRCTC ,Book My Show and Red Bus are some of widely used services by people in India. e-Tickets is well received and is adopted by mainstream consumers and service alike. This is why Gmail should be able to parse these mails and Google Now should use them effectively for remainders /tickets instead of we searching through our heap of sms or emails during the time of travel when it is most needed .
Even more awesome would be if Google is able to build a xml format so that third-party services that sends e-tickets in emails can stick to that format and Google Now can use them effectively ,an idea similar to Passbook for iOS would be a good place to start with.
Google , are you listening?