Despite being one of the biggest players on the internet, Google is a prolific pranksters and loves to come up with a geeky joke from time to time. There are countless easter eggs hiding within its wide variety of services, tricks which will amuse and entertain anyone who comes across them. Here are a few of our favourites.
There was a secret code hidden in old Konami computer games which gave users extra lives. Tapping up, up, down, down, left, right, left, right, b, a, then start (or enter, in the case of a computer) would see power-ups being delivered, and Google has included this command in its documents editor.
Just tap the keys in sequence and watch your document flip round horizontally. Utterly useless, but brilliant fun.
Beam me up, Scotty
YouTube fun, and one for Star Trek fans. Searching for the famous phrase from the sci-fi show sees the results emerging as if they had been teleported across space, appearing in a haze of blue fuzziness before they come together on the screen.
Search for Earl’s Court Station on Google Maps and switch to Street View. You’ll notice a Tardis sitting on the street outside, a tribute to beloved TV time-traveller Doctor Who. If you click on the Tardis, you can browse around the inside of the machine, which is inevitably much larger inside than it is out.
Google in 1998
A bit of internet history now, and a particular easter egg gives you a glimpse of the web of old. Searching for ‘Google in 1998′ displays your results in the way they would look back when the search engine was founded, which shows just how much its minimalist design has moved on since.
Chromecast model number
One of Google’s gags makes it over to the physical world, in the form of the Chromecast TV streaming gadget. In a very vague reference to Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, the model number listed on the back of the dongle is H2G2-42. Apparently, H2G2 is a fan abbreviation of the comedy series title, and 42 is famously supposed to be the meaning of life.
While Google has plenty of easter eggs spread out across its services, Google Now gets particular attention. Take a look at some of the best hidden within the personalised search feature.