Gotcha! A Roundup of April Fools' Day Pranks From Around Tech and Social Media
Headphones for cats. Scent-based online search. An abolition of vowels. This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to this year's April Fools' Day pranks happening today all over the web.
Here, we've collected some of our favorite pranks that have been dreamed up by tech and social media companies like Twitter and Sprint. Some are silly. Others are completely ridiculous. Others, well, might just have you fooled.
Have you spent hours and hours building your brand's presence on YouTube? Too bad. The online video publishing powerhouse announced that it is shutting down. Turns out, YouTube was essentially an eight-year-long competition to find the best online video. Executives at YouTube think they finally have enough videos to determine a winner, which they will announce tonight at midnight. Just kidding.
Twitter: Who needs vowels, anyway?
For April Fools' Day, the popular social network announced a new, two-tiered service. Companies and individuals who want to continue using Twitter like usual will need to pony up $5 per month. The free service will be rebranded as "Twttr" and tweets will no longer contain vowels. In addition to shoring up more revenue, Twitter said eliminating vowels will "encourage a more efficient and 'dense' form of communication." Vry fnny.
Gmail goes all blue.
The engineers at Google have spent the past six years dreaming up how to completely revolutionize Gmail. The result is Gmail Blue. The compose button, boldface, italics -- everything in the app is blue. Not orange. Not brown or even yellow. Blue. "It's Gmail, only bluer," the company says in a video announcing the spoof.
Music lover? Now your pets can be, too.
Who says your cat can't love gadgets as much as you do? Sony said it's launching the "Animalia" line of tech products for pets. It includes the K9 4K TV (an entertainment system calibrated for doggy vision and hearing), the M3-OW KittyCans (headphones for cats) and In-Cage Speakers (speakers designed specifically for hamsters running on their exercise wheels). It might just be a gag, but the video is pretty funny.
Look at me when you're texting me.
Constantly glancing down at your smartphone or tablet checking work email or texting colleagues? You no longer have to worry about seeming rude doing that in public. Sprint has unveiled Sprint Specs -- glasses with eyes on the lenses, giving the illusion that you're always looking forward and not avoiding eye contact. Hm. Creepy much?
A new 'scentsation' in search.
Forget scratch and sniff. Google has another April Fools' Day joke up its sleeve: Google Nose. Users go beyond type, talk and touch in order to pull up smells in search. Google calls it an "internet sommelier" that expertly pairs images, descriptions and aromas. Nothing smells fishy about that, right?
What was your favorite April Fools' Day prank? Let us know in the comments below.
Jason Fell is director of native content for Entrepreneur, managing the Entrepreneur Partner Studio, which creates dynamic and compelling content for our partners. He previously served as Entrepreneur.com's managing editor and as the technology editor prior to that.