How Google Now, Siri & Cortana Predict What You Want

Google, Apple and Microsoft all have agents that want to be your personal assistant. But how well Google Now, Apple’s Siri and Microsoft’s Cortana can predict your needs depends on how much you want to share, how wedded to particular platforms you want to be and, in some cases, how much you actively want to help make those predictions happen.
Going Under-The-Hood
Ferreting out how these agents work is a challenge. The companies all have pages that describe Google Now, Apple Siri and Microsoft Cortana. But those are generally focused on what they can do, not how exactly they do it.
There are various help and privacy pages, but those aren’t always helpful. Google Now information is, in part, spread out across a page for the Google App for iOS and another area for Android. Cortana has a nice single page on privacy but still lacks specifics on some points. Apple’s privacy page notes that it doesn’t mine mail for ads, but neglects to

Search Engine Land Source

[WATCH] Google’s Amazing Location-Aware Search Finds Answers About Nearby Places

How tall is that tower in front of you? What’s the name of a river you’re near? What time does a store you’re looking at close? Google’s new “location-aware” search can answer questions like these, even if you yourself don’t know the exact name of something you’re near.
Google demonstrated the feature at our SMX Paris search marketing event yesterday. It’s relatively new, having been released several weeks ago both for Android and for those using the Google Search App on iOS. But Google never made a formal announcement about it, so few have known you can do this type of searching, until now.
Behshad Behzadi, Director of Conversational Search for Google, showed how it worked during an afternoon talk he gave on the future of search. “Location-Aware Search” is my name for the feature, since Behzadi told me Google itself hasn’t named it.
I captured several examples he showed on video, which I shared via Twitter. You can watch them below

Search Engine Land Source