Happy April Fools’ Day 2018: T-Mobile Re-Launches ‘Sidekicks’, Roku Streaming Socks, Brewolingo, and More

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April Fools’ Day is here once again, and this year it falls on the same day as Easter. As you browse the internet today, be forewarned that many of the stories, press releases, and announcements discovered over the next few hours will likely be hoaxes made by companies with a proclivity for teasing their customers every April 1.

If the past few years have been any measure, you can expect bizarre Apple-related accessories, an absurd product or service unveiling from T-Mobile, wisecracks from Siri, and much, much more.

It’s also worth noting that April 1, 2018 marks the 42nd anniversary of Apple, which was founded on April 1, 1976 by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, and Ronald Wayne, who sold his share of Apple back to Jobs and Wozniak for just $800 later in 1976.

All these years later, Apple’s products have now become a major target for April Fools’ Day pranks, along with jokes coming from companies, apps, services, and accessory makers that are well-known by Apple users, which we’ve accumulated in a list below.

T-Mobile’s Smartshoephone

T-Mobile is bringing back the classic Sidekick smartphone for a new generation with the world’s first “Smartshoephone,” called the T-Mobile Sidekicks. Company CEO John Legere said that the Sidekicks are optimized for unlimited data on T-Mobile ONE, include a slide-out screen like the original Sidekick, have near-field “toe tap” communication with fellow Sidekicks, and more.


T-Mobile usually leans towards wearable tech for its April Fools’ Day pranks, in 2016 introducing a hands-free binge-watching headset and in 2017 showing off the “T-Mobile ONEsie.” For the new Smartshoephone, T-Mobile has even put out a fake Home Shopping Network-style video in which John Legere and COO Mike Sievert laud the advantages of the “fully connected wearable shoes.” The twist is that T-Mobile is selling a plain, non-IoT version of the Sidekicks that you can really buy… for $65.

Roku’s Happy Streaming Socks

Roku is hoping to help customers easily control their next binge-watching session with a new pair of Happy Streaming Socks. The socks have built-in motion sensors for menu navigation, find-my-socks technology, and can heat up to keep your feet warm.


Roku says that its Streaming Socks are a convenient alternative to controlling shows and navigating menus when your hands are messy from snacking while watching TV.

Man Crates’ Porch Piracy Protection

Man Crates has begun a new “Porch Piracy Protection” initiative, aimed at protecting customers from package thieves when orders are left at their doors.


Now when you order from Man Crates, you can choose from a list of free deterrents — like an ill-tempered baboon, creepy clown, or aggressive mime — that are promised to prevent looters from ever getting near your packages.

Duolingo’s Brewolingo

Freemium language-learning app Duolingo has launched “Brewolingo,” a collection of craft beers that the company says will help you become more fluent in a new language. Apparently based on actual research, Duolingo’s prank product promises fluency in French, Spanish, and more just by “getting tipsy.”

We get it. Learning a language is hard. Luckily, research has shown that besides frequent practice and cultural immersion, getting tipsy can help. That’s right, folks: drinking beer can actually help you get fluent.

Enter Brewolingo: four varieties of craft beer brought to you by Duolingo. Featuring a special blend of wheat, hops, water and secret Owlgorithms™, this beer is the only fluid you’ll need for language fluency.

Brand designer Jack Morgan shared a few behind-the-scenes images and details of his work on Brewolingo’s brand identity, packaging, and website design. The four faux flavors include Spring Season-Owl, India Pale Owl, Mad Amber Owl, and Night Owl Stout. Unlike T-Mobile, Duolingo isn’t actually selling a version of its joke — the “Buy Now” link directs you to the company’s legitimate training courses.

Other April Fools’ Day Pranks, Jokes, and Hoaxes:

We’ll update this post in the event that any other noteworthy April Fools’ Day announcements appear online.

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9to5Mac Happy Hour 166: Apple’s EDU iPad event, Apple Watch redesign rumors, iOS 11.3 release

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This week Benjamin and Zac share thoughts on Apple’s March education event where the new 9.7-inch iPad with Apple Pencil support was unveiled, new Apple Watch Series 4 rumors that claim a new design is coming with more screen, and the launch of iOS 11.3, watchOS 4.3, and other software updates.

9to5Mac Happy Hour is available on iTunes and Apple’s Podcasts app, Stitcher, TuneInGoogle Play Music, or through our dedicated RSS feed for Overcast and other podcast players.

Sponsored by FIBARO: We’ve teamed up with FIBARO to give away a HomeKit bundle to turn your house into a Siri-controlled smart home.

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Are you happy with your phone’s camera?

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Samsung Galaxy S9

There are so many different things about our smartphones to like. And manufacturers know that, too. It’s one of the reasons why they pack them full with new features and make sure that they’re powered by the best possible specs (for the price you’re paying and what they’re asking). People want a certain level of effectiveness for what they’re paying for.

For anyone who has been using mobile phones for an extended period of time, then you’ve been following along as our technology has improved drastically over the years. I can still remember certain milestones: Finally upgrading away from VGA cameras. Getting a front-facing camera on our phones. So on and so forth. And that’s just the camera we’re talking about here. Our processors, and especially our displays, have improved so much.

We’ve reached a point where our cameras are just . . . good. Yeah, there are still rankings out there, and entire sites and publications dedicated to finding out which ones are “the best”, but it’s safe to say that if you have a smartphone launched in the last few years –even the entry-level devices– then the camera is probably pretty great.

Recently, a friend of mine told me that they are switching from their iPhone X to the Galaxy S9+, simply because they want the best camera possible.

Now, this threw me off for a couple of reasons. First and foremost, I know this friend of mine reads up on the publications that rate this kind of thing, so I already know that they were aware that most of them rated the Google Pixel 2 XL as a better camera than the iPhone X already. I pointed that out to them, and all they had to say was that they didn’t want the Pixel 2 XL at all, or the Pixel 2 for that matter, so it wasn’t even on their radar.

Okay, fair enough.

The second thing that stood out to me is that I know this person really likes their iPhone, and the fact that they are switching to Android to get a better camera — when the iPhone X’s camera is already ridiculously good — basically boggles my mind. That isn’t to say that there is anything wrong with Android or the Galaxy S9, because there isn’t. This is more like I know this person is going to switch back to the iPhone at some point, and that’s just because they like iOS more and they’ve already tried to switch once before.

The differences between cameras aren’t drastic anymore. Like I was saying earlier, they’re all pretty great. But that conversation with my friend got me thinking: Are you genuinely happy with the camera on your current daily driver? Which phone are you using right now, and did the camera play a part in the reasons why you bought it? Or was it just a nice bonus? If you could change the camera in one way or another, even if it’s related to software, what would you change? Let me know!

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9to5Mac Happy Hour 164: MacBook lineup predictions, Siri status report, Apple unveils two events

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This week Benjamin and Zac discuss the latest MacBook update rumors, The Information’s report on Siri’s history and why Apple has struggled to scale it, a surprise Apple education event announcement mid-episode, Apple’s Texture acquisition and Eddy Cue’s appearance at SXSW, and Apple unveiling dates for WWDC 2018.

9to5Mac Happy Hour is available on iTunes and Apple’s Podcasts app, Stitcher, TuneInGoogle Play Music, or through our dedicated RSS feed for Overcast and other podcast players.

Sponsored by CaseCo: Win an Apple HomePod + $ 500 gift cards from Caseco & 9to5Mac [Giveaway] + Get 30% off Caseco cases & accessories with promo code “9to5Mac30off” (Expires 3/31)

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Happy Pi Day, Here’s Some piCoin, piCoin is Actually a Thing

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Happy March 14th, people — it’s Pi Day. And how better to celebrate than investing in, yes, a pi-based cryptocurrency. It’s a gift that keeps on giving, right?

This is not a joke: piCoin is a thing that actually exists. The cryptocurrency launched in 2013 (and then re-launched in 2014) with the aim of creating a crypto with mathematical and educational underpinnings. piCoin’s specifications revolve around the infinite-digit number that gives its name. The maximum number of coins is capped at 31,415,926,535. Its block time (or: how long it takes to solve each transaction in its blockchain) is 314 seconds. And the reward for solving that initial block is 314,159 coins. And so on.

Convinced? Don’t jump for your wallet just yet.

At its launch in March 2014, bloggers seemed to see piCoin as an interesting enough concept. According to a forum post from that time, the founders had lofty goals for this math-oriented concept, hoping to popularize it among “mathematicians, math teachers, math enthusiasts, and every student in the world taking a math course.” And indeed, it had a wild ride! As the coin grew, the founders imagined “opportunities for charitable efforts will arise; math scholarships, education for those in need, and even funding a school in a third world country are all distinct possibilities down the road.”

Alas, it wasn’t meant to be. Within two months of that 2014 launch, buying had slowed to a dribble, though the coin’s developers claimed to be working on some marketing ideas. Within three months, even enthusiasts of the coin were declaring it officially dead. CryptoSlate currently lists the coin as abandoned.

So it’s probably not a great idea to complete your Pi Day with a heaping slice of piCoin. Instead, use piCoin as a cautionary tale — as crypto continues to surge in popularity and grow as a mainstream interest, it’s probably best to exercise a reasonable amount of caution when approaching new coins with attention-grabby conceits. Or, at the very least, give them more caution that you’d approach, say, an actual pie.

The post Happy Pi Day, Here’s Some piCoin, piCoin is Actually a Thing appeared first on Futurism.

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Happy anniversary to Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild!

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As Breath of the Wild rings in its birthday, the Internet is in full-swing of celebrating the Switch’s first Zelda game and all it’s impacted over the last year!

Today marks the one-year anniversary of the launch of Nintendo Switch. It is also the first day gamers around the world were able to traverse the dangers and adventures of Hyrule in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. It both represents a past we love and cherish and proves that the Switch is a solid system for enjoying full, open world adventure games. BotW has had a great impact on a lot of our lives this past year.

See atAmazon

Tell us about your experience with BoTW. Hop on into the iMore forums and join the discussion there, or post your favorite BotW moments here!

Cella Lao Rousseau
03-03-2018 10:12 AM

We’re celebrating BotW’s birthday this weekend, which got us thinking: is there a particular aspect of Breath of the Wind that’s taken your breath (some pun intended) away? Maybe there’s a specific feature or level design that’s changed the way you looked at the game altogether? :yes::heart::thinking::gold-star: Let me know what your thoughts are!

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Happy Tenth Birthday: Cydia Jailbreak Store Turns 10, Still Going Strong

Happy tenth birthday to Cydia! The popular jailbreak store for iPhone and iPad turns 10 and is still going strong after all those years. Here’s a quick look at how far we have come.

[ Continue reading this over at RedmondPie.com ]

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Today in Apple history: Happy birthday, Steve Jobs!

February 24, 1955: Steve Jobs is born in San Francisco. He will go on to co-found Apple and become one of the most important figures in the history of consumer technology. He’s also probably a big part of why you’re reading this website right now. Happy birthday, Steve! Let’s take a moment to reflect on […]

(via Cult of Mac – Tech and culture through an Apple lens)

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Happy Birthday to Steve Jobs and MacRumors

Former Apple CEO Steve Jobs, who co-founded Apple and was responsible for catapulting the company to wild success with products like the iPod and the iPhone, was born on February 24, 1955, and were he still alive, today would mark his 63rd birthday.

Jobs not only founded Apple alongside Steve Wozniak in 1976 and directed the future of technology with the development of some of the first personal computers, but he also brought Apple back from the brink of failure even after being ousted from the company he created.


Though he passed away in October of 2011 when he was just 56, Steve Jobs had a lasting impact on Apple’s culture. As current Apple CEO Tim Cook often says, Steve Jobs’ DNA — his taste, his thinking, his unwavering perfectionism, his dedication to hard work, and his lust for innovation — will “always be the foundation of Apple.”

Cook always honors Steve Jobs on his birthday, and will undoubtedly have some thoughts to share with us later today.

There are no Apple products — and few technology products — on the market that have not been influenced by Steve Jobs in some way, however small, and had we not had Jobs, the world might be a different place today. Millions of lives have been touched by Apple devices, including the lives of each one of us here at MacRumors and all of the readers who visit the site every day to see what’s new in the world of Apple.

MacRumors shares a birthday with Steve Jobs, and as of today, the site is turning 18. MacRumors was founded on February 24, 2000 by Arnold Kim, and what started out as a small side project has flourished and grown right alongside Apple into the best Apple news site on the web.

We here at MacRumors are grateful to all of our dedicated readers, community members, and volunteers, and we look forward bringing you Apple news and rumors for the next 18 years.

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160: The HomePod Review | 9to5Mac Happy Hour

This week Benjamin and Zac have a short chat about the new Apple HomePod. (Stay tuned for 9to5Mac’s official review later next week. This episode was also recorded before stain-gate, so thoughts on that next episode.)

9to5Mac Happy Hour is available on iTunes and Apple’s Podcasts app, Stitcher, TuneInGoogle Play Music, or through our dedicated RSS feed for Overcast and other podcast players.

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