April Fools' 2013: The best techy pranks of the day

April Fools' 2013: The best techy pranks of the day

Summary: Just because ZDNet didn't pull your leg with any fictitious, fun stories today, that doesn't mean others haven't. Here are some of the best of this year's April Fools' jokes.

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TOPICS: Tech Industry
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  • It's that time of year again...

    On this day every year, some companies pull off the most audacious stunts on their unwitting customer base and wider population — Google, as usual, took center stage with its range of pranks — yet many still fall for even the strangest of pranks.

    This year, as you might expect, is no different. While ZDNet isn't playing a part in the foolery — we're taking the "serious approach" to news (at least most of the time) — we thought you might enjoy some of the other jokes pulled by other websites, technology companies and news networks.

    Update 1 (10:30 a.m. ET): Added Nokia microwave, Newegg's deals, iFixit's orange teardown, and WolframAlpha's handwritten knowledge engine. 

    Update 2 (11:00 a.m. ET): Added Sony for pets, a Play-Doh 3D printer, and Blizzard's crabby crab.

    Update 3 (11:35 a.m. ET): Added "The Freedom Bay," SwiftKey's full-body text input, glass-bottomed Virgin Atlantic airplanes, and another April Fools' from Google.

    Update 4 (12:40 p.m. ET): Added Imgur's snail mail upload, and Vimeo's "Vimeow" cat video uploading service.

    Update 5 (1:30 p.m. ET): Added Reddit's pokey stick prank.

  • 1. Google adds "treasure" to Maps

    Google is taking on a pirate theme for its Maps application, by allowing users to transform its mapping service into a pirate-like treasure map. A tea-stained and sepia toned map displays some of the most popular landmarks in the real-world. 

    As an added bonus, check out any Street View road, street or highway and you can zoom in through a pirate's spyglass. 

    Check it out here.

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Topic: Tech Industry

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23 comments
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  • this year's winner is

    gmail blue
    bksherly
  • berry review had a couple good ones too

    Including BBM launching on iOS and Android (fooled me) and nearly bulletproof Z10's being given to Barack Obama and Stephen Harper.
    Sam14.8
  • These were all good

    Glad to see others doing it too like Toshiba and Samsung.
    I love April fools day in technology. It introduced me to rick rolling.....
    spikey289
  • Instagram

    launches for Windows Phone 8....
    Vish2801
  • Virgin Mobile's Smart Pagerz

    were pretty hilarious.

    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=605159622845372&set=a.206762502685088.58820.176824455678893&type=1&theater
    Patrick Macomber
    • Still, windows on the bottome of a plane

      would be really, really cool.

      And nerveracking, but cool none the less.
      William Farrel
  • April Fools' 2013: The best techy pranks of the day

    The Bing one is hilarious if you mouse over the little squares. Subtle jabs at Google.
    Loverock-Davidson
    • Loverock-Davidson....Really the best one was

      Surface RT was actually going some place..............what a hoot that was
      Over and Out
      • That's 001. You'll likely repete it 006 more times.

        just saying, Another View from the Rear.
        William Farrel
        • William Farrel...go check Loverock Davidson salkles figures for Surface RT

          will you please....I figure between the two of you you may get it right....and than again, maybe not.
          Over and Out
  • unpakt now moving to the moon!

    my favorite it unpakt .. now moving to the moon! https://www.unpakt.com/
    cnt_connector
  • about the Blizzard crab

    "Why a crab? Not sure, but rumors suggest the crab is simply known as Crabby the Ghost Crab. How very appropriate. "

    The lead systems designer uses the "ghostcrawler" alias and a crab avatar on the Blizzard forums.

    Blizzard is one of the very few businesses I've seen where some of their top employees are actually active in their forums.
    CobraA1
  • Google Maps thing..

    The Google Maps thing doesn't work if you have MapsGL turned on. Unfortunately once I turned it off, I can't seem to get it turned back on again.
    qaelith.2112
    • Shame considering

      that even the pirate version of Google maps is superior to ios maps.
      hmmm,
  • I wish this wasn't April 1st.

    But since it is, my favorite this year is: http://itsfoss.com/linus-torvalds-to-join-microsoft/
    l_creech
  • Another for your list

    Have you seen this one yet, from hosting firm UKFast? http://bit.ly/10hbGeP Braintraining on a new level! #Blipvertology
    Alice Gibson
  • Google Treasure Maps Portland Oregon

    They put a bid on it
    a nod to Porltandia
    Scatcatpdx
  • Sound cloud has one too

    ON songs in soundcloud there is a new link that says "heres the drop!" Its their drop meter that they trademarked!
    spikey289
  • Google

    Shame that google can't stop wasting resources like this while the world is still wondering if the removal of Google Reader is a joke!

    We are not laughing...
    dumb blonde
    • LOL

      It's not like there's only one feed reader in existence, FFS. If it were getting used enough it wouldn't be going away. "The world" really doesnt care about Google Reader, a few diehard users do. Google has a long history of April Fool jokes, and it's not like they don't have resources for these.

      And you know what? Most of us ARE laughing! ROFLMAO
      spookyone1