Google Now is the big talk of the app world this week. The popular productivity and reference feature within the latest update of Google’s Search app for iPhone and iPad was introduced only two days ago, but is already coming under criticism for its supposed lack of efficiency.
Users are reporting that they’ve seen drastic changes in expected battery life since installing Google Search 3.0 and enabling Now. While I personally haven’t noticed anything unusual at all, there must be a fairly large section of users with some issue if it’s caused enough stir to make it online at several blogs. That said, the development of the app itself has been designed to ensure it uses as little power as possible. As per Google’s release notes:
To provide up-to-the-minute information, Google Now turns on Location Services. Even though the icon stays on, the app has minimal battery impact:
• The app doesn’t turn on the GPS. Instead, it receives passive updates from nearby cell towers and WIFI hot spots.
• If your battery is running low, the app pauses location updates.
• The app stays asleep unless your device moves a long distance.
Now, while that may be the case, a glance at the App Store reviews makes it clear that Google’s app isn’t playing nice with location services for a lot of people.
If you’re one of the users experiencing issues, fixing it should be relatively simple. You just need to switch off location reporting within the Google Search app. Open the app, hit the settings cog icon in the top right, go to ‘Privacy’ then scroll down and switch the ‘Location Reporting’ toggle switch to ‘off’. Once you’ve done that, you should see an improvement in your device’s performance.
Google also encourages users with issues to make use of the in-app ‘Feedback’ form, which you can use to describe issues and send system data so that they can investigate it and hopefully get a clearer picture of what’s going on.
Have you been having any issues with battery life after Google Now?