April Fools’ is an odd one this year because it lands on a Sunday. While this may provide some great opportunities to do ‘wacky’ things to your family’s roast dinner, it means that the workplace japes will have to wait until next year. Still, wherever you find yourself, there are a few pranks you can do on the day that don’t take much time or effort for maximum LOLz. Here are a few suggestions.
1. Replace word shortcuts on the iPhone
A classic, this. Head into the Settings section of your pal’s iPhone, go to General, then Keyboard and Shortcuts. Click ‘Add New Shortcut’ and wreak havoc. The idea is to change commonly-used words like ‘the’ to more, err, ‘racy’ alternatives, so that when they type texts it automatically replaces them. Cue endless hilarity. It can also be done in the settings of Microsoft Word.
Android’s got a nice little app that launches up into a faux blue-screen-of-death, akin to that of old Windows machines. Install the app when they’re not looking, launch it and nonsense text will begin to flood their screens. The phone also starts to emit weird noises aplenty. Warning: may cause tantrums.
3. Time travel fun
Right, so, go with us on this one… Find the oldest phone you’ve got (preferably a Nokia 3310). Run into a shop, bonus points if it’s a phone shop, bang it down on the desk and ask, panicked: “What year is it?!” When they tell you, pick the phone back up and run out screaming “It worked! I’m home!” This can be done alone or with friends, but works better if you’ve got a mad, Jumanji-style beard on the go.
This is a work of pure evil genius: If you live with someone who’s USB ports are out of view, buy the Phantom Keystroker and bung it in the back of their computer. It’s designed to sporadicaly, and without warning, mess with your computer’s inputs. Ie. It’ll occasionally start typing nonsense or moving the mouse. We’d advice you use it with caution, and never on anyone with a fragile state of mind or who got a little bit too into the Matrix movies.
5. A good old-fashioned Frape
Ah, the classic activity of messing with people’s Facebook when they’ve left themselves logged in. The opportunities for this are numerous: hapless fools at the Apple Store, people’s phones or laptops. Your approach should be considered; don’t rush anything. If you’re going for a full onslaught, be thorough.
Don’t just change their profile picture to one of Robert Pattinson; sneak into their interests and change every single thing to Twilight-related ones. Or go for the slow, gradual approach, like this chap did with his friend’s pictures.
Of course, sometimes simpler is better. I once saw immense success from simply writing ‘Help’ as a friend’s status from his iPhone. Many fires needed to be put out that day.
6. Wallpaper confusion
One bonus one from @guyver3x on Twitter: take a screenshot of someone’s computer desktop, make it the background and disable (or hide in a folder) all the onscreen icons. As our tipster informs us: “A uni mate reinstalled Windows to clear it #Imabastard”
Further reading | How to ruin your life online