With World Emoji Day upon us, Apple, Google show off emojis coming soon to their devices

  • TECH
  • Wednesday, 17 Jul 2019

A preview of Apple's upcoming 2019 emoji. © Courtesy of Apple

More inclusive and diverse emojis are coming soon to Apple and Android devices. 

Ahead of World Emoji Day, which is July 17, Apple and Google shared some of the new emojis coming to devices later this year, including interracial couples, same-sex couples and people with disabilities. 

There also are new food options – waffles, falafel, garlic and butter – and animals including the sloth, flamingo, orangutan and skunk. 

The new designs are based on approved characters in Unicode 12.0, created by the Unicode Consortium, the non-profit group that decides what and when new emojis will be adopted. 

Apple devices including iPhones, iPads, Apple Watch and Mac computers are getting 59 new emojis while the new Android Q will bring 65 new emoji. 

Emojipedia founder Jeremy Burge created the made-up holiday in 2014, which is celebrated annually on July 17 – the only date that has an emoji of its own with the calendar emoji. Wednesday also is National Hot Dog Day. 

Apple collaborated with such organisations as American Council of the Blind, the Cerebral Palsy Foundation and the National Association of the Deaf to get emojis including a person with a white cane, an individual sitting in a motorised wheelchair, a prosthetic arm, someone signing the word “deaf” added. 

Tinder started a Change.org petition in 2018 to get interracial characters added. 

Apple said in a statement Tuesday that its Holding Hands emoji is getting a major update and users will be able to select “any combination of skin tone, in addition to gender, to personalise the people holding hands, opening up more than 75 possible combinations”. 

According to Google, Android Q will have 71 multi-skintoned couples and support 53 gender inclusive designs of emojis that Unicode has not specified gender including a police officer and a person getting a haircut. 

“With this update, emoji with no gender specified will default to a gender ambiguous design on Android – but you can still choose between male and female presentations if want to opt into a gender,” Google said in a statement. – USA Today/Tribune News Service

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