Google has revealed they are working on a new Google Now card that will deliver local news stories based on a user’s location. Google Now cards work off of algorithms to present the user with “contextually relevant” items. Among the inputs used to determine what is relevant are interests, time of day, and location. The new card is being tested in a closed beta right now, apparently only within Google itself, as revealed by Johanna Wright, Google’s vice president of search and assist.
Wright refers to the card as displaying “local hyper-local news”. Apparently the card will pull in stories that can be connected to someone at the neighborhood level as opposed to your typical news sources which aggregate news at a city or region level. Wright gives an example of the card coming up with information about someone being stabbed in a park near her house.
It is not clear whether Google will ever make this card available to the public. If it does, it could serve to create a push medium for local news as relevant stories are brought up in Google Now instead of users having to visit a news site or aggregator.
For our Google Now fans out there, is a hyper-local news card something you would be interested in? If you don’t regularly use Google Now, would this be something that would entice you to give it a second look?