Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Google's Pokemon April Fools Day Challenge

Google has a history of playing fun pranks on April Fools Day and this year is no different, although maybe a bit more elaborate than most!

In years past, Google has announced a fake beta test of a smell-searching product called Google Nose, pranked Gmail users that the new version was going to be better by making the whole interface blue and announced it was shutting down YouTube for 10 years.  But this year, Google opted for a prank a bit more 3-Dimensional.

In a video released yesterday (in time for April Fools Day in Japan), Google announced a fake competition combining augmented reality and Pokemon characters.  The person who finds the most Pokemon characters in Google Maps supposedly would win a trip to Googleplex to compete for a job with Google titled "Pokemon Master". 

So, let's think about this prank.  I personally have never been THAT into Pokemon (sorry, I know people are very defensive if they love Pokemon!) but there is one main reason I can get behind this April Fool's Day Challenge.

Augmented Reality!

There is so much that can be done with augmented reality and I hope that this play by Google is a hint that they will soon be launching more augmented reality functionality within Google Maps!

Have you tried the Pokemon Challenge? What do you think of it?

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