The internet has really gotten serious about April Fools—it's hard to even remember what this day was like before some of the world's largest companies started playing tricks on you via your browser. April Fools is sometimes amusing, but also frequently annoying because you can't trust anything you see, and those joke pages will live on long after the day is done like joke landmines for you to come across when you're least expecting it. Such is life on the internet. To help you keep track of the gags this year, we're going to keep a running list of everything right here.
I'm sorry. Of course it didn't. But - wait! Don't leave yet. I have actual news to share with you on this oft-insufferable day of fools, and news from Saygus, no less. "It's probably just more excuses," you'd say, defeated and without hope. Well, uh, actually, you'd be right. So there's that.
Saygus set a shipping estimate of the end of March back in January, and I thought it was probable they'd unveil a very new and exciting list of reasons why they wouldn't be able to meet that estimate at some point very soon. As it turns out, "some point" was the afternoon of March 31st, also known as yesterday.
It may not be April yet, but that's not stopping Google from beginning its April Fools shenanigans. Several app developers have begun noticing a new section entitled "Reviews from Space" in their developer console, populated with a single 5-rocket-ship review from an astronaut named Alex Scott. The glowing review is sent from April 1, 2029, which might explain its premature nature: traveling back to the past has no doubt taken a toll on Mr. Scott's sense of time.
The device information holds some clues of what we can expect from future Google phones: the Nexus Space (codenamed nexus16) has a screen size of 3000 by 2000 pixels, with a density of 500 dpi.
Inbox by Gmail isn't even yet a year old, but Google is trying to improve mail even further. But this time, it's not working with the digital variety. It's doing something about snail mail.
And frankly, it's about time. People have been sticking envelopes in mailboxes for a century or two, and the experience hasn't changed all that much. Our mailboxes could be better. They could be smarter.
They could be the Smartbox.
This box brings many of the luxuries of email to physical mail. Receive notifications on your phone whenever new envelopes arrive. Automatically organize content into folders. Block spam by delivering electric shocks (okay, your mail carrier probably won't like that one).
When HTC announced the RE camera, an inhaler-shaped device that lacks a viewfinder of its own, it seemed like great fodder for an April Fools joke. But no, that product was real, and it actually exists.
So what has the Taiwanese manufacturer come up with as a truly absurd product, something even it wouldn't consider turning into reality? Why, the RE Sok.
This product brings notifications to your ankles so you can see them when you're changing shoes. Not wearing shoes? Not switching them at the moment? Tough. Your ankle's vibrating regardless. Better bend over.
Did those rumors of Microsoft investing in professional ROM developer Cyanogen spook you, Android purist? Then you might want to skip flashing today's nightly build for your Nexus 6. Starting late last night, CyanogenMod devotees who flashed the March 31st nightly builds to their phones and tablets were disheartened to see the following message as Android was upgrading:
That sound you heard was millions of CyanogenMod devotees who cried out in terror... and were suddenly silenced as they looked at the calendar.
"A selfie stick is not just an accessory," the man says with shades of Jony Ive, "it's an extension of who you are." So true, isn't it? Except it's not true. Not a word of it. This is April Fools, and Motorola is having a little fun with the promo video below for a handcrafted selfie stick. Not funny? Okay, Motorola is also offering $140 off an unlocked Moto X to make up for it.
Google has spent years putting its search functionality into as many form factors as it can manage. It all started with desktops and laptops. From there, Search hopped to phones. Now we see it making its way into TVs, watches, and cars.
Today, the tech giant has announced a new product offering that's more adorable than any that has come before. Meet Google Panda.
To use Google Panda, you simply ask the stuffed animal a question. It will then provide answers to the best of its ability. There's no screen, nor any text to read. This is one tech toy you interact with as though it were another person.
When OnePlus staff member David S. said that the tiny phone manufacturer would release a drone called the DR-1, our BS-o-meter shot past the "nope" point in under two seconds. As many of you guessed, the OnePlus drone is indeed an April Fool's Day joke. But apparently the company is taking a page out of Think Geek's playbook: in addition to being a mildly amusing misdirection, the DR-1 drone will also be available for purchase.
The promotional website is vague and mostly unhelpful... which is either a surprisingly self-aware critique of itself on the part of OnePlus, or simply an application of their previous marketing to a kinda-sorta fake product.
Ever wondered if there was an alternate reality where your world was flipped, wrong was right, right was left, left had stayed, and... I may have lost focus right there. Let me readjust my direction and perspective... So elgooG asked the same question and came away with a solution to show you (and let's face it, your bewildered coworkers) a mirror of our universe, or at least the part of it that we all visit several times a day.
Head over to com.google to experience the marvel of an inverted search engine that makes your entire brain go haywire trying to get some sense out of the displayed words.