Google Now update adds RSS-style Cards, Waze traffic reports, and more

When Google announced Android 4.4 KitKat in October, the company said improvements were also on the way for Google Now. The search giant recently made good on those promises late Wednesday, with rolling out a Google Now update bundled within a larger Google Search for Android refresh. The update packs some nice new Cards (hi Waze!), and tweaks to some existing features.

Let's dig in.

OK, RSS

Google Reader may be gone, but if your favorite blog or Website gets updated, Google Now can alert you with a new Website update card. There's also a revamped News topic card that Google says “brings you fresh articles from the Web on topics you care about.”

The new News, What to Watch, and Website update Cards. (Click to enlarge.)

Google Now already does this to a certain extent by showing you articles related to a news story you were reading earlier, or a topic you were searching for. It sounds like this new feature expands on that initial offering by showing stories related to broader topic categories.

Google's also muscling in on Netflix's territory a bit, adding movie and TV recommendations to Google Now with a new “What to watch” card. The search giant didn't mention how this card works or what will trigger it, but screenshots indicate that you'll see it whenever you're at home and call up Google Now during evening primetime.

Waze traffic incident reports are also coming to Google Now following Waze's integration with Google Maps in August.

Google Now reminders can now be set to repeat, a feature we've been looking for since reminders came to Google Now in May.

Finally, anyone who was already using Google Now to track their packages can now get alerts when a package is ready for in-store pick-up. That's a handy feature if your local couriers like to “deliver” packages by not knocking on the door or ringing the doorbell.

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