April 1st has traditionally been one of the silliest days of the year, and yesterday was no different, as numerous technology companies put their money where their mirth is and debuted some wacky products that will (hopefully) never see the light of day.
First up was Google, promising 8-bit Google maps for Nintendo’s NES system, which takes advantage of a dial-up connection to render world maps that resemble 80’s era videogames.
While this was obviously a joke, most impressive was the amount of effort the company put into creating what looks like it could be a real product, thirty years ago. For an entertaining blast from the past, hit the video below.
Sticking with the Back to the Past theme, Google also supposedly launched Google Tap, a new input method for Gmail on mobile devices that eradicated QWERTY keyboards and replaced them with two keys: a dot and a dash.
Users would then need to learn Morse code to tap out their emails in the future. Better yet, the company promised users will be able to tap out two different messages at the same time on one screen.
Like its supposed 8 bit Google maps, the company went all out to make the development seem legitimate, with a dedicated website and a video introduction to the premise that actually made it look appealing.
However, Google weren’t the only ones having some fun. AdBlock introduced Catblock for the Chrome and Safari browsers, which replaces ads with pictures of cats. Then, from the sweet to the outright silly, Sony purported to be launching the smallest ultrabook series to date, the VAIO Q.
The ultra-tiny ultrabook was apparently the size of a 5c piece, and yet would somehow offer a quad core i9 processor, 8 GB of memory, an AMD Radeon HD 6650 graphics card, and a 0.75” x 1.25” 1080p display. Of course, it would be accompanied by a ‘LiveView accessory’ (a magnifying glass).
The launch video for the device though, is probably one of the funniest video’s we’ve seen in a long while (most particularly the other optional accessories for the device).
To the point
Admittedly, along with other pranks, such as Conan O’Brien allegedly buying Mashable, and Nokia creating a phone from ice, it was obvious from the outset that none of the above were genuine. However, they were all entertaining, and offered a good break from the normal seriousness that the technology industry is so familiar with.