To help people find local answers in their neighborhood Google India on Thursday announced the launch of beta launch of a new app called “Neighbourly” in the country.
“The beta version is available today in Mumbai. If you’re in a different city, join the waitlist,” Google India tweeted.
“With ‘Neighbourly’, we’re finding new ways to move forward on Google’s mission to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful,” Josh Woodward, Group Product Manager on Google’s Next Billion Users team, said in a statement.
The app will help you answer a variety of queries related to day to day activities like finding out which is the safest park for kids in an area or the best place to eat a particular dish or even where to find a physiotherapist in your neighborhood.
The residents who know your city best can use the app to share tips, tricks, shortcuts, and recommendations with less in-the-know residents.
This is a new type of hyperlocal-focused app designed to answer your questions, via The Next Web. The app looks a lot like a Google version of Nextdoor, a similar local social media network you can use to talk to people near you and broadcast your thoughts to friends and colleagues around the world.
Neighborly also builds on the voice that faced a spat of initiatives during Google’s developer conference by allowing users to speak to the app when they want to answer or ask questions. The application can recognize English and eight other Indian languages which are Marathi, Hindi, English, Gujarati, Kannada, Telugu, Malayalam, Tamil, and Bengali.
The app not only allows users to post questions in local languages by allowing them to type in scripts like Devanagari and but also urges users to agree to three promises in the hopes of making sure they behave like good children, called Neighbourly Promise.
This promise requires users to “be civil and help improve the neighborhood.” With the Neighbourly Promise, the app appeals users to help create a safe, friendly and supportive environment. In short, one needs to be civil answering the questions and helping other users.
The app also has safety features, meaning you can browse, ask, and answer questions without sharing personal information. Personal details like phone number, full name, and other contact information are kept private when you use Neighbourly, informed Google.
The drawback of this app is that while sitting in Bandra, you can’t ask questions about Colaba, and even if you change your location and ask, people only from Bandra will answer it.
The app, which is in the beta phase, is active only for Android users in Mumbai who are running Android 4.3 (Jelly Bean) and higher on their phones.
The app is also very light on the phone as it occupies less than 7 MB, and works offline. Even if you’re disconnected, you can keep answering and asking questions, and they will all automatically send once you’re connected back again.