Google Japan celebrates April Fools' Day with an announcement that everyone would wish that it is real. The company unveils a cute physical version of Google Now which can talk and respond to any questions that one asks from it. Dubbed Google Panda, the furry assistant claims to be capable of answering questions whenever and wherever possible and can even recognize 50 languages.
Google Panda was introduced in a video that also showed Chris Yerga, Vice President of Engineering, talking about the product. There was also a demonstration of the product's "quick answering capabilities" and its three unique features done by Ozan Mindek, Engineering Lead for Google Panda in Japan. These features are cute, mobile and shockproof.
Google Panda's cute feature is mainly attributed to its shoe-button eyes and its soft rounded design. Moreover, the design was inspired by Yu-hin, a real and live panda.
Google Panda is mobile since the user can bring it anywhere he goes. It has arms that can cling tightly to a user's own arm, allowing one to "talk" to it while on the go.
The shockproof feature shows that Google Panda is safe from an unexpected fall. Even when the fall comes from the top of a table, its inside remains safe and intact.
Finally, the video also tried to explain the reason why the company has chosen the animal Panda among other animals.
"A collective and fuzzy curiosity is like millions of strands of fur. You have the unknown, the black, that which cannot be decided. And you have the soon to be known or searchable. That's like the white part of the database. To bring all of that together into a flexible, original, online learning system, those polar opposites. There's really only one form that would be appropriate and that's the Panda bear," said Matt Cutts, the Distinguished Software Engineer of Panda technologies.
Google Panda will have at least two sizes: the compact Google Panda 5 and the much bigger Google Panda 6. It is being touted as an on-the-go search device that is covered with an exterior resembling the image of a panda.
"Google Panda is engineered with state of the art emotional and conversational intelligence," said Chris Yerga in the video. "All you have to do is speak your mind."
Google Panda may just be an April Fools' day launch. However, Panda lovers and Google fans would have wanted it otherwise.