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Android: Google Launches Operating System Update With New Nearby Notification Feature

Released Thursday as part of an update for Google Play Services, Nearby will give notification for apps and websites based on a user’s location. It requires Bluetooth and Location enabling.

The Play Store offers over one million apps- many of which are created to be used in specific location or situations. The right app at the right moment lets you get more done. For example, at a store, you may want a barcode scanner to check prices and reviews for an item. Or when you’re at a museum, an audio tour would enhance the experience as you make your way around the exhibits.

But, getting the right apps at the right time can be tough if you don’t already know about them. Android will now nag you to download apps based off your location. Google officially announced a new Android feature today that notifies Play Store users of apps that might be relevant to them based off their location. For Example:

  • Print Photos directly from your phone at CVS Pharmacy.
  • Explore historical landmarks at the University of Notre Dame.
  • Download the audio tour when you’re at the Broad in LA.
  • Skip the customs line at select airports with Mobile Passport.
  • Download the United Airlines app for free in-flight entertainment while you wait at the gate, before you board your flight.

Android’s new Nearby Feature will alert you to apps and websites useful at your location. First, a user would be alerted via a notification of a useful app, then they would download it and launch it. Why not make that download more speedy through the use of Instant App Technology?

In addition, Google will also suggest mobile websites, when applicable, via Nearby. Its ability to suggest websites is thanks to earlier tests through the Physical Web Project, and will require the location to use beacons that work with Nearby.

Some developers have already built “proximity-based experiences,” as Google calls them, using beacons and Nearby, including The Broad Museum, United Airlines, The University of Notre Dame, CVS, and Airsides’s Mobile Passport.

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