The joke took the form of an additional 'send' button which allowed Gmail users to instantly end any email conversation by 'dropping the mic'.
As Google put it: "Simply reply to any email using the new 'Send + Mic Drop' button. Everyone will get your message, but that's the last you'll ever hear about it. Yes, even if folks try to respond, you won't see it."
After pressing the 'mic drop' button (which was right next to the normal send button), an animated GIF of a mic-dropping minion was added to the top of their email. The conversation was then muted, and users would get no further notifications if the recipient emailed them back, although the email would appear in the little-used 'All Mail' folder.
After facing a backlash from users, some of whom accidentally insulted friends, lost jobs and angered colleagues, Google has disabled the feature, just hours after it was launched.
In a statement, the company said: "Well, it looks like we pranked ourselves this year."
April Fools' Day 2016: The best and the worst pranks
April Fools' Day 2016: The best and the worst pranks
Nigel Farage has horrified some Ukip supporters with an April Fools’ Day joke announcing his backing for Britain to stay in the European Union. “I've decided that today is the perfect time to announce that I'll be supporting the campaign to Remain in the EU,” he tweeted from his account. While most Twitter users noted the timing of the announcement, several of Mr Farage’s supporters seemed concerned
WWF has launched a new campaign 'Adopt a Unicorn today' to help protect mystical creatures: "In recent years, demand for unicorns’ spiral horns and loss of their rainbow-spangled habitat have led to a catastrophic fall in numbers of the mythical creature, to the point where these incredible animals now exist only in our imaginations"
The Virgin Trains has announced that customers will soon be able to catch a steam train to work, as it’s revealed that the original Flying Scotsman locomotive will be joining its fleet later this year
Domino’s has unveiled its latest robot innovation – The Domimaker, a state-of-the-art pizza creation robot that transports customers live into the Domino’s kitchen to take pizza personalisation to the next level. It allows rookie pizza makers to connect to the Domimaker LIVE via their webcam where they can direct the robot’s swivel-tech rotating arms and twin-jet sauce dispensers to create their own pizza
The German Embassy has done its own April fool, featuring chickens 'laying rugby eggs': "The German government today announced a new policy aimed at establishing rugby as the country's new national sport. At the unveiling of the far-reaching measures that will see rugby become an integral part of German culture, including hens that lay rugby 'eggs', government spokesperson G. Flügel stated that the country would "focus all attention and efforts on winning the 7 Nations Championship"
Google is usually pretty good at April Fools' jokes, but this year's gag may have backfired. For one day only, Gmail users can choose to 'drop the mic' during email conversations. Gmail's 'mic drop' April Fools' joke is costing people their jobs
Isle of Man has announced plans to erect a dome over the Island, protecting the stunning natural environment for all to enjoy. The pioneering design shows how the Island will take inspiration from structures such as the Eden Project to provide a controlled environment, with key access points around transport hubs
Wetherspoons, the pub chain, has got in on the fun with claims it was taking over Eastenders local the Queen Vic pub in Albert Square
David Cameron has announced his “pride” in bringing in the long-awaited National Living Wage – only for announcement to be dismissed as an April Fools’ Day joke. The unfortunately-timed tweet was sent from the Prime Minister’s official account as the UK woke up to the annual deluge of fake news stories and pranks
J.K Rowling has been used as the butt of an April Fools' Day joke by the pro-independence Scottish Resistance group. A Facebook claimed the fiercely pro-union author had performed a drastic U-turn and was starting work on The Fall of the House of Westminster
Virgin Active has launched ‘Personal Trainers’...talking trainers. Essentially they are the future of personal training with in built speakers featuring top training tips to help motivate and drive you to the end of your workout. The trainers have loads of other weird and wonderful features including locking laces which can’t be removed until 200 calories are burned, a projector that displays over 100 workouts and goal trackers
Rowse has announced the creation of 'wasp honey' from 10,000 insects on a 'foreign exchange from Mexico'. To ensure the wasps don’t feel too homesick during their 10-week stay Rowse Honey bee farmers have created tailor-made hives, complete with UV lamps and heaters which set the temperature to a balmy 23 degrees and fitted mini speakers which play a constant stream of Latin American music including Carlos Santa, Ricky Martin and Enrique Iglesias
The Guardian 'exclusively' announced that the royal family was planning to make a dramatic intervention to support Britain remaining in the EU. The report was attributed to an unnamed 'royal correspondent' - an unlikely position at the republican-minded paper
Following discussion over the prospect of having various stars of The Night Manager as the next James Bond, the Daily Mail announced the role would be going to Olivia Colman. 'Olivia's no fool,' a source was quoted as saying. Indeed
Simon Cowell is installing a trap door for the latest round of Britain's Got Talent auditions, the Daily Mirror reports
The London Eye has announced the conversion of two capsules into 'luxury studio penthouses', complete with constant champagne and a personal pillow fluffer in 'an enviable postcode'. "Arrangements for electricity, phone and postal services are currently in discussion"
Over at The Times, students at two London universities are apparently planning to rename their historic institutions to 'decolonise and demisogynise' them. Names including Gaia College and Citizen's College were touted
The Express claims the stars of the EU flag are to be incorporated into the Union flag
The Royal Albert Hall is claiming it will be used as a 'scaled-down version of the Large Hadron Collider': "Since opening in 1871, the venue has proudly celebrated the best of the world’s latest scientific developments...Now, it hopes to make scientific discoveries of its own as particles will be fired around its corridors at high speed in the hopes that some science will happen"
Pimm’s, the quintessential drink of the British Summer, has unveiled the result of an unprecedented sponsorship deal to display its logo on the world’s most famous clock tower, the Big Ben
"Due to a bug, the Mic Drop feature inadvertently caused more headaches than laughs. We're truly sorry. The feature has been turned off. If you are still seeing it, please reload your Gmail page."
Alongside the statement, Google stressed the feature was not made available to Gmail business customers, and explained users were notified about the button when opening emails.
However, their warnings clearly went unnoticed for some. One user wrote on Google's product forum this morning: "This is horrible - just sent an email to a client with this stupid icon on it. I can't afford these stupid pranks!"
Another user, a freelance writer, claimed the button had lost them their job, after their boss assumed the minion GIF was a criticism of their editing skills.
One particularly foul-mouthed forum user summed the situation up, writing: "Do you f****** think that when it's April 1st my email is something I f*** around with?"
Google's April Fools' jokes are usually pretty good, but this one failed disastrously. Hopefully they won't try any similarly hilarious gags next year.Reuse content