Every year on April Fools Day, Google’s divisions come up with their own version of jokes and most of them can range from being weird to being wonderful. Let’s take a look at this year’s April Fool jokes by Google.
Pokemon Challenge by Google Maps
Google has introduced a Pokemon Challenge in its latest Google Maps that requires that user to navigate on Google maps and to discover and capture Pokemon creatures to fill up Pokedex. For starters, search for Google’s Amphitheatre HQ on the maps and you would see a mystical creature there right at Googleplex. Here is how it shows up on my Nexus 4 device:
Nest Total Temperature Control
Over a month ago, Google had acquired Nest Labs and they too participated in the April Fools’ day jokes. Nest teams up with Virgin America and develops a feature called “Total Temperature Control.” Every seat on Virgin’s jets gets its own Nest device to let passengers set their own temperature preferences as they fly.
The Gmail team came up with SHareable sELFIES to mark the tenth anniversary of Gmail (which is true as it started on April 1, 2004). This feature lets you set your photo as your Gmail theme and then share it with others. You can subscribe to “Top trending Shelfies” and Gmail with set that theme for you and they keep changing with time. It is a nice little feature to have in your email settings and can make emails seem less boring. Here is the one I see in my inbox:
Google Magic Hand
Google Japan has come up with the Magic Hand, an innovative input method for smartphones. This does the work of “touching” the smartphone devices on your behalf. Honestly, it seems more difficult to control this magic hand than to actually use the smartphone. But, nonetheless, it is innovative and brings “hands-free” to a whole new level. Take a look:
Google’s other acquisition, Waze, which usually tells one about traffic and road blocks, came up with a hilarious video called Wazedates. It has beta testers finding the love of their lives while signing up to WazeDates and thus recommending them to everyone. WazeDates alerts drivers of other likely singles on the road nearby. You can search for drivers based on age, sex, orientation, and so on. This video is a must watch.
Text to Emoji
Emojis are pictographs used to indicate words or phrases and Google Chrome has come up with replacing certain words with Emojis. Google Translate support for Emoji is now built directly into Chrome for Android and iOS. According to Google:
“One Emoji symbol can easily replace dozens of characters, improving efficiency and comprehension on the go. It turns out the best way to communicate in the future is to look to the past: the ancient Egyptians were really onto something with their hieroglyphs.”
Auto Awesome Photobombs
The Google+ team came up with the idea of introducing celebrities to photobomb your pictures. Just get a photo with friends and leave some room for the celebrity photobomb. For now, they have roped in David Hasselhoff and he doesn’t disappoint.
Forget typing an email, what if your body movements could dictate your email. We all know that email space needs disruption, but this Google prank takes it to a whole new level. In Google’s words:
“Gmail Motion uses your computer’s built-in webcam and Google’s patented spatial tracking technology to detect your movements and translate them into meaningful characters and commands. Movements are designed to be simple and intuitive for people of all skill levels.”
Google Play Signature Edition
Google apps couldn’t be left far behind and they came up with the stuff that is least expected in this age of data transfer, actual physical USBs with a personalized note sent by the app developer to the user and it is according to Google “also adds a personal touch that is so often missing in our modern digital age”. You can customize your boxes and drives too. Check this out:
To sum it, Google is one of the only tech firms to take April Fools’ Day very seriously and like every year it leaves us with playful innovations. Personally, I like the Nest Labs and Virgin America prank and I so wish it could come true one day. This page will be updated as different Google divisions come up with their pranks.
Keep Googling, keep learning!