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Google Now comes out of beta and lands on the desktop

Can use the same account across mobiles and desktops
Tue Mar 25 2014, 13:59
Google Nexus 10 Google Now

PSEUDO-SENTIENT PERSONAL ASSISTANT Google Now has launched in its official version on desktop machines.

The service is set to appear in the latest build of Google Chrome for PCs and Mac computers following its debut in the developer channel in January.

According to Google, unlike that developer version, users can access Google Now simply by signing in with the same account that they use to access Google on their mobile devices. When we tested Google Now via Chrome on our laptop and Chromebook on Tuesday, it worked but we still had to activate it manually in the flags menu.

When we tried the service back in February when it launched it beta, it was still turned off by default. However we were able to access the command to activate it from the flags menu. At that point it triggered a pop-up window telling us that we should be in the gym, so we switched it off.

Google also recently unveiled another development for Chrome users that lets them see when their account might be hijacked.

While usually innocuous, web browser hijacks are nevertheless a pain, usually triggered by a piece of freeware that makes its income by stealthily installing a secondary program, or registry settings that change the web browser settings, such as changing the search provider.

The Chrome blog explained that users will now be informed if a third party tries to change settings within Chrome, and will offer a one-click way to prevent it from happening.

Google cited web browser hijacking as its number one complaint in Chrome, and although the functionality has been available in the background since last year, the option will now pop up at the moment of potential hijacking to let you approve or reject it. µ


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