Google has added a new feature to the Google Play Movies & TV app that lets you pause what you're watching and figure out information about it without having to go search to find out what you're looking for.
Google Play product manager Ben Serridge writes on the Android blog:
“What’s his name again? Wasn’t he the guy in that movie with the battle of the bands?” Now, while you're watching a movie on Google Play, you can find out that it’s Jack Black (of course!), who was born in Hermosa Beach and is 43 years old. And with one click you can search the web and learn the fun fact that his parents are both rocket scientists.
We’ve added info cards to the Google Play Movies & TV app so you can easily learn more about the actors, related films and even what song is playing in many of your favorite movies. When you’re watching a film on your tablet, simply press pause and cards will pop up with information about actors on screen. You can tap on an actor’s face to learn more about him, like his age, place of birth, his character in the movie, and his recent work, or scroll through the info cards to learn more about the movie or soundtrack. When you resume the movie, the cards will disappear.
According to The Verge, the info Google displays in these info cards comes from the Knowledge Graph.
A feature like this could be invaluable for someone like me who regularly accesses the IMDb app during pretty much everything he or she watches. Wired suggests, however, that nobody will use this feature, and that nobody uses Google Play to watch movies and TV. Of course, Amazon also launched similar functionality this week on Kindle Fire devices and Wii U, which actually does tap into IMDb. Google's only works for "100s" of movies, though they're working to expand it to more.
Google's new feature is only available on tablets running Android 4.0 and higher at this point.