Soon after its release, the Google Now feature of the Search app met a bump along its otherwise smooth road on iOS. Since Google Now requires constant access to your current location in order to function properly, speculations were rife that the feature is a real battery-killer. Though Google was quick to quash these rumors, refuting all such claims in a statement released just a few hours ago. So now that they don’t have to worry too much about their precious battery life, a lot of people are sure to start using Google Now quite heavily. However, you have to remember that Google Now is only a part of the Search app in iOS, and doesn’t enjoy the level of system integration that it has in Android. StartToNow is a Cydia tweak that might be considered the first step towards ingraining Google Now in iOS. Admittedly, it only makes sure that Google Now becomes the default view for the Search app, but this means you have to perform less taps to get to everybody’s favorite and immensely useful new virtual assistant by Google.
By default, the Google Search app still shows up with a search box and the usual searching options when you launch it, although you might argue that Google Now has become the app’s main feature. To access the Google Now screen, you have to swipe upwards and access the cards hidden at the bottom. If you think that the Now view should be the default one, or at least that the users should have the control to choose the section that shows up when the app is launched, head to the BigBoss repo of Cydia store and download StartToNow. The tweak doesn’t require any configuration and springs to action automatically upon installation. It does have a menu of its own in the stock Settings app, which houses a short description of StartToNow, along with an enable/disable toggle.
Changing the tweak’s state doesn’t require a respring, but it is better if you kill the Search app from the App Switcher tray when you do so. The only case when StartToNow might not work is when there is an active search query in the app, or if you had left the app on one of its sub-services, like Google Goggles.
After hearing about StartToNow, my first worry was that it might not work with GoogleNowEnabler – the tweak that lets you use the feature around the globe. Thankfully, everything worked fine, and the region restriction bypass wasn’t affected in any way. So, if you have started liking Google Now after spending a few days with it on your iPhone, do give StartToNow a shot, as it is a perfect tweak for fans of the feature.