Google’s various services have long been more partner-friendly than those of Apple and others, but today the company announced that Google Now–its smart personal assistant–will now support close to 40 different third-party apps.
Among the most recognizable services include Airbnb, Lyft, The Guardian, and Pandora. Google Now can already scope out weather and traffic conditions to help you get to your meeting on time, for example, but it could be possible now to view and purchase a nearby Airbnb listing right from a “smart card” in the feed.
The Wall Street Journal claims that no user data from Google Now will be shared with third parties, and that although the cards may be activated by location, the location of individual users will not be shared.
There will no doubt be a few concerns about what this increased linking of your online profiles will mean, but if your goal is a digital assistant that can solve any problem you throw at it, Google’s Swiss Army knife of an app seems to be shaping up as the best solution.