Actively searching for directions, weather reports or even what to have for dinner is so last year.

The future lies in apps that can read your mind and offer up this information automatically, with Google leading the way with its Now app.

Technically Google Now doesn’t read a user’s mind, but it is capable of predicting what they will do next, before offering relevant help and information at each step without ever being asked.

It does this by using what’s called ‘predictive analysis’.

Predictive analysis isn’t a new concept; financial services have used it for years to work out a person’s credit score and how likely they are pay back a loan, for example.

Yet Google Now, along with other intelligent personal assistant apps including Osito and Grokr, uses this technology to predict how everyday smartphone owners are going to behave.

The software is based on an algorithm that combines various snippets of information to form a prediction.

In the case of these personal-assistant apps, the software scans calendar entries to work out where a user is, or should be.

It combines this with location data, taken from the phone or tablet’s GPS unit, as well as posts on social networks, email information and more.

It will then present the user with Cards designed to offer support or help it thinks they need.

For example, if a calendar on an Android phone contains a diary invite, Google Now will create a reminder.

It will then check to see whether the user is en route to the meeting and add directions to this reminder, or work out how long it will take them to get there based on current traffic… see more

source: dailymail UK