Google Now has been a pretty big deal since it’s release. It has an easy-to-use interface, and is fully integrated with the tried and true Google search engine. There’s video upon video of it beating Siri in both speed and accuracy. However, it was unfortunately only compatible with Jelly Bean. Was being the operative word. After some efforts from a number of members and developers, Google Now is available for ICS, but the Voice Search function didn’t work. After some more effort, they finally got Voice Search working.
The original thread was started by XDA Senior Member SilentStormer. However, it was a community effort and the number of contributors and testers are far too long to list. After some time, XDA Senior Member lenny_kano uploaded the apk file that allowed Voice Search to work and XDA Forum Member gachana posted the instructions to get everything installed properly. Since then, the OP has been updated to include everything.
In essence, Ice Cream Sandwich’s Voice Search was integrated with Google Now in order to allow for Voice Search. As SilentStormer explains:
The app will use ICS’s voice-to-text engine to get your answer, and then enter it into the Google Now v5 app from before. All you have to do is hit enter and then congrats, you’ve got working voice search!
To get it working, there are a few ways users can try. The first is renaming a couple of apk files, putting Google Now in /system/app, and then setting the permissions accordingly (rw-r-r). The second method is renaming the first apk and trying to just install Google Now like you would any other application. The third, for AOSP-based ROMs only, is to flash a zip that’ll do all that for you.