New TV Cards and Google Offers in Google Now

Google Now brings you the information you need before you even ask, and today adding new TV and Google Offers cards to help connect you with more information throughout your day. Add a cloud backend to your app right from IDE using Android Studio.

Google Now, which brings you the information you need before you ask, gets two new cards today: TV Cards and Google Offers.

The new Google Now TV Cards with an internet-connected TV, can help you unlock more information about what you're watching. All you need to do is connect your Android device to the same network that your TV is on and tap "Listen for a TV show" in Google Now. Google will then show you information, "like where you've seen an actor in the cast before, or more information about the people mentioned in the show."

"So if you were watching Nik Wallenda cross the Grand Canyon this weekend, with Google Now, you could learn that the "King of the Wire" in fact holds seven Guinness World Records, including highest bike ride on a high-wire," explains google.

Google Offers card get you reminders for your saved offers when you're near the store -- right when you need it. Google Now will pull up the offer so you can use it quickly and easily.

These new cards and more are available in the latest version of the Google Search for Android app on Google Play store.

Google Now TV CardsGoogle Now TV Cards

In other Android news, Google is offering a walkthroug to help you setting up backend to your Android applications in the Android Studio.

""Android Studio" lets you easily add a cloud backend to your application, right from your IDE. A backend allows you to implement functionality such as backing up user data to the cloud, serving content to client apps, real-time interactions, sending push notifications through Google Cloud Messaging for Android (GCM), and more," explains google.

Additionally, "having your application's backend hosted on Google App Engine means that you can focus on what the cloud application does, without having to worry about administration, reliability or scalability."

When you create a backend using Android Studio, "it generates a new App Engine application under the same project, and gives your Android application the necessary libraries and a sample activity to interact with that backend. Support for GCM is built-in, making it easy to sync data across multiple devices. Once you've generated the project, you can build and run your client and server code together, in a single environment, and even deploy your backend code right from Android Studio," google adds.

Preliminary setup requires the following:

  • Download Android Studio if you haven't done so already and set it up.
  • Make sure you have an application project set up in Android Studio. You can use any working app that you want to integrate with your backend, even a sample app.
  • If you'll be running the app on an emulator, download the Google APIs Addon from the SDK Manager and run your app on that image.
  • Create a Google Cloud Platform project: In the Cloud Console, create a new project (or reuse an old one) and make note of the Project ID. Click on the words "Project ID" on the top left to toggle to the Project Number. Copy this as well.
  • Enable GCM and obtain API Key: In the Cloud Console, click on APIs and turn on the Google Cloud Messaging for Android API. Then, click on the "Register App" button on the top left, enter a name for the app, then select "Android" and "Accessing APIs via a web server". In the resulting screen, expand the "Server Key" box and copy the API key.

Check the rest of the how to get started with the basic setup here.

Setting up Android app using Android Studio

Android Studio: My Android App Screen