Fool’s Errand: A look at some April Fool’s Day gags
Every year, the 1st of April marks April Fools’ Day. And of course, the beginning of the financial year. Obviously, the former seems more fun to celebrate than the latter because what’s more fun than pranking and deceiving friends, family, and colleagues. They won’t take it personally because they’ve been given the “Today is an all pranks are okay kinda day” disclaimer. Hey, all is fair in love, war, and April Fools’ Day, right?
With that in mind, it has become recent tradition of sorts for businesses to prank their target consumer audience. No, not on a daily basis! We’re talking about plain and simple fun that some establishments decided to have on nobody else’s expense but their own. In the last few years, visitors of the worldwide web the world over have witnessed some ideas that made them shake their heads with a smile at the sheer ridiculousness while others have made them think if it could be a possibility in the future to come (remember Google Nose and other interesting pranks of 2013?).
Let’s shift focus from Google and look at a couple others who caught our eyes. This April 1st introduced the trend of wearables – gadgets and gizmos that you could wear as accessories instead of lugging them around clutched in your hand. HTC Gluuv and Samsung Fingers were such examples. But we’ve seen Hollywood introduce them to us in games (Call of Duty: Black Ops 2) and movies (Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol). In fact, they did it so well that we never once thought “Yeah, right! Like that’s a real thing.”
Maybe that’s what inspired Virgin Mobiles to introduce SmartKicks to us, even if only for one day. There are moments that make us imagine a song playing in the background just as we walk in through the door (in slo-mo for added effect) – at a cousin’s wedding, at our birthday party, or at a classy bar – everybody has to know the instant we step into the scene, right? Well, we don’t have to star in a movie to make that happen. Virgin Mobiles wanted us to believe that they’d come out with shoes that could play music via Bluetooth speakers, charge a phone on the go, and if synced with a phone’s calendar would vibrate to let us know there’s an appointment to keep. They went a step further in making one for outgoing gents and one for extrovert ladies (SmartSneak for men and Smart-letto for women).
On the surface, these gadgets may have been designed only to have a good laugh, but they don’t seem impossible to exist. The best examples are Samsung Galaxy Gear and Google Glass. Maybe one day these prank-products will be on sale for real and the joke will be on us. Who knows?