Anand Paka, Google News Product Manager
Did my favorite team win or lose? Should I carry sunscreen or rain gear when I go hiking this weekend? And what did I miss in the world of technology and business? These quintessential questions of the day are all ones that Google News can provide quick answers to with some nifty new features. The aim is all about making news more relevant and useful to you by surfacing content that you might need in a hurry.
1. For avid sports fans, a newly introduced “Sports Scores” section on the News homepage and the Sports page will give a snapshot of live, recently concluded and imminent sporting activity. From this summary, it’s easy to dive in further and do things like click on a score for details of the match or on a specific team to get recent news about it. The section is customizable; for example, if you prefer not to see hockey scores, you can turn hockey ‘off’ while keeping the other sports ‘on’. You can also remove the entire section if you prefer. At the outset, we’re launching in the US, with the big four sporting organizations covering basketball, football, baseball and hockey. Over time, this section will expand to other countries and sports. Stay tuned.
2. Our homepage also has a new Weather section on the right-hand column. With a quick glance, this section lets you see the 4-day weather forecast starting from today. The weather section is ‘smart’ - it defaults to show the weather for your current location. (As with local news, you can set this location manually.) We think this is a neat feature as you can track local weather conditions right next to the top stories without having to jump elsewhere to get this information.
3.The Editors’ Picks section has been a great channel for publishers and readers alike. It offers publishers a unique way to showcase their best work and build their brand, while enabling readers to discover great content that they might otherwise miss. Today we have extended Editors’ Picks from our homepage to our section pages so that you can now enjoy these hand picked articles for the particular section that you are reading at any given time. Editors’ Picks are now being introduced into the Technology and Business sections with plans to add more over time.
Look for these features the next time you visit Google News.