Google saves hay-fever sufferers with its new pollen forecast
Hay-fever sufferers rejoice! Google has saved the day yet again with a pollen forecast alert integrated into Google on mobile.
The search giant noticed a seasonal pattern of searches around pollen forecast spiking in April, May and again in September. To alleviate the problem, Google teamed up with The Weather Channel to integrate its pollen index and forecast data information directly into Google.
The idea behind this is that, just as you can see the weather at a glance on Google, you’ll now be able to see information about the pollen count in your area. Google outlined the new app addition on its blog, stating that you can even set alerts on your phone for when pollen counts go above a certain threshold.
To access Google’s new pollen forecast, just open Google on your phone and search for “pollen forecast”. Just as you get with weather forecasts, you’ll be greeted with a set of blooming flowers indicating the level of pollen in the air. Click on a certain day and it will also tell you which pollen is terrorising noses everywhere.
For those of us who suffer from hay fever, or at least get the sniffles when the pollen count is high, this new addition is an absolute godsend. The detail that Google’s forecast goes into is excellent: if you know which pollen you’re most allergic to, you know when to worry about high pollen days. No-one likes taking antihistamines unless they have to, and now you’ll know if you have to before you’ve even left the house. If you don’t know the pollen you’re at risk from, you can work backwards with the app and use the process of elimination to learn more about your specific allergies too.
It’s not clear whether Google Home will have the same integration once Google rolls it out across all devices, but chances are your Home will also be able to tell you pollen count when asked. The service doesn’t seem to be active at the time of writing, but I’m sure you can expect it within the next few days.