Technically it is a product that no longer exists, but the Google Now pane that is available to users who make use of the Google Launcher could be getting an interesting update. Google Now has been replaced by the Google Assistant and for their own Pixel devices, Google switched the interface to the Pixel Launcher and now calls Google Now the Google Feed. Whatever the name may be, despite a lack of activity for the tool, it appears Google is testing a possible change to the interface to make the background transparent.
For users who make use of the Google Launcher or Pixel Launcher, the Google Now/Google Feed pane is typically accessed via a right swipe on the home screen although a widget can also be used to get to it. When it comes up, the pane is populated with a variety of cards that users have some control over, including things like important emails, calendar entries, weather, and parking information along with news items, sports scores or even stock prices.
Normally all of those cards are displayed on top of a white background that fills the whole screen. The change that was spotted involves the background as Google makes it transparent with just a little bit of shading to darken the smartphone wallpaper which is now visible behind the cards.
One user who posted some screenshots on Reddit noted Google also appears to be making some changes to the interface so users can switch between the tabbed interface and the single pane interface. The tabbed interface has been rolling out to users, but for now at least once you get it you have no option to go back to the single pane if that was your preference. A new “inbox” icon in the top menu bar appears to be a new switch for these two modes.
Anyone else out there spotting this change to the Google Now pane?