If you haven’t already heard or seen, Google Now is basically an intelligent personal assistant developed by the company that is available within the Google Search mobile application for both Android and iOS platforms. Continue reading to see why it will change the way you use your smartphone.

5. Explained

Google Now uses a natural language user interface to answer questions, make recommendations, and perform actions by delegating requests to a set of web services. Along with answering user-initiated queries, Google Now passively delivers information to the user that it predicts they will want, based on their search habits.

4. iOS

Google Now is implemented as an aspect of the Google Search application. It recognizes repeated actions that a user performs on the device (common locations, repeated calendar appointments, search queries, etc.) to display more relevant information to the user in the form of “cards”. The system leverages Google’s Knowledge Graph project, a system used to assemble more detailed search results by analyzing their meaning and connections.

3. Siri vs. Google Now

Scott Webster of CNET praised Google Now for its ability to remind users of events based on past location histories and check-ins and further commended it for providing “information instantly in a clean, intuitive manner” without having the user to request for it.

2. iOS vs. Android

Critically, a review by Ryan Paul of Ars Technica claims that like most other voice activated apps, including Siri, voice recognition is a major issue. However, Paul noted that the ability to type queries provides users with more options.

1. Boarding Pass

Some commentators have noted that the predictive power of Google Now reveals “exactly how much data and information Google actually has about [users’] routines and daily lives.” Popular Science named Google Now the “Innovation of the Year” for 2012.