Aug, 16 2013

Google Schemer has been sitting in the Google Play Store for quite some time now, but it’s nowhere near one of Google’s most popular applications. With just 500,000 – 1,000,000 downloads in the Play Store, some folks might not even know what it is.

What is Google Schemer?

Google Schemer is a pretty quirky augmentation for Google’s social experience. Simply put, it’s an app that will help you get ideas on what to do based on what’s going on in the world around you. If it’s raining in your area, Schemer might suggest you stay inside, pop some popcorn, and watch a movie. If you end up at your favorite restaurant, Schemer could urge you to pick between one of several dishes.

Whatever you “scheme” to do, it’s all shared with your friends and family through Google+. Heck, you could even make it a group thing and invite your friends to come “scheme” with you. If you can’t find a certain scheme through searching, you can create your own and “inspire” others to complete them, as well.

The app features a map view that can show you schemes in specific areas, so even if you don’t have an idea of where you’re going before you get there you’ll easily be able to find schemes in that area.

Where else could Schemer be used?

Google has already used Google+ to make Schemer more social, but what if they also used Google Now? Wouldn’t it be the perfect subset of features for a platform that’s already location aware and search driven? Think about it. Google Now already knows what the weather is like right outside your door, and it already knows what your interests are based on your searches and (yes, believe it) email.

Imagine being able to ask Google Now to show you a list of things you could do on a given day, or having it show you a list of schemes that would be perfect for you based on where you are. Later on, Google Now could check up on you and ask if you’ve completed it, and offer to post your accomplishment to Google+ if you have.

What purpose would it serve?

For starters, integrating Google Schemer and Google Now would help to give the service some much needed exposure. Google couldn’t possibly force it on users, of course, but a nudge here and there wouldn’t hurt. The biggest thing hurting Schemer right now is that a lot of people don’t know about it. It’s social, so it’s not fun if none of your friends are hip to it.


It could also be a way to add some productivity features to Google Now without making productivity feel boring and mundane. That would mean the very fabric of Google Schemer would have to change a bit, but I’m sure any such changes would be welcomed by anyone using the service.

Google Schemer is an interesting concept, but unless Google does something to drum up more interest we fear it’s going to go the way of the Dodo bird, Google Reader, et al. Heck, the application hasn’t even been updated to take advantage of the Holo user interface yet. It feels like a forgotten, lost, red-headed step child for the time being, but hopefully Google can find a way to make this old, but unique take on social interesting again.

Take a look at Google Schemer in our quick hands-on video above, and let us know if you come up with any more interesting ways it could be integrated with Google Now (or any other Google services) in the comments section below. And if you’re interested in giving it a try, be sure to download it in the Google Play Store.