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Microsoft, Netflix, others join April Fools' Day tech pranks

April 01, 2013|By Salvador Rodriguez

Earlier we showed some of the first April Fools' Day pranks posted online by tech companies, with Google notably leading the way, but more companies have joined in on the humorous holiday with pranks of their own.

From Netflix's super-specific movie and TV show suggestion categories to Microsoft's April Fools' Day jab at Google, tech companies have been relentless with their pranks Monday.

You can check out the first dose of pranks in our earlier post or in our photo gallery, and you can find more pranks below.

Microsoft jabs Google with Bing Basic

Microsoft has been focusing its marketing against Google in recent months, and the Redmond, Wash., company decided to use April Fools' Day as its latest reason to bash its rival. The company released Bing Basic, where users can search for "Google" on Bing.com to see the Microsoft search engine take on the look of its rival.

"The main goal here is just to learn more about how our world would look if we hadn’t evolved," Bing said in a blog post.

Google expands Wallet service with mobile ATM

Google, which seemingly loves April Fools' Day more than all other tech companies combined, added to its pranks with the release of Google Wallet Mobile ATM, a gadget that attaches to smartphones and can dispense cash. Besides being mobile, this ATM is also special because it can dispense $2 and $50 bills.

Netflix adds super-specific categories

The popular streaming-video service partook in April Fools' Day by giving users super-specific movie and TV show category suggestions. What this means is Netflix suggested categories such as "Movies And TV Shows About Seriously Pissed Off Wives" and "TV Shows Where Defiantly Crossed Arms Mean Business!" to its users, although its usual suggestions are already pretty specific. 

Hulu touts fake shows

Netflix rival Hulu, meanwhile, promoted fake TV shows on its website. The shows are based on fake programs from real TV shows and they include "Itchy and Scratchy" from "The Simpsons," "Ya Heard? With Perd!" from "Parks and Recreation," and "Space Teens with Robin..." from "How I Met Your Mother."

Digg Rickrolls users

If you head over to Digg.com and enter the Konami code, the social news website will Rickroll you, meaning it will start to play Rick Astley's "Never Gonna Give You Up." That code, entered on your keyboard, is up, up, down, down, left, right, left, right, B, A.

Contactually turns users' contacts into cats

Contactually, a service that helps professionals organize their contacts, pranked its users by turning all of their contacts into cats. Their information is unchanged, but all their contacts' pictures have been turned to photos of cats. A bit distracting, but at least it's cute. 

Vimeo becomes "Vimeow"

Vimeo, the video-hosting website, also combined April Fools' Day with the Internet's love for cats by becoming "Vimeow." The service gave its homepage a cat face-lift and announced a slew of cat-related features, all in a blog post signed by its new "Pawsident."

SoundCloud points out bass drops

Sound-file hosting service SoundCloud used April Fools' Day to introduce its new "Here's the Drop" feature. The feature pokes fun at Dubstep songs, which tend to have "bass drops," but the fake feature is included on most sound files, including The Times' files of Supreme Court justices speaking.

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