Inclusionary emoji are a relatively recent phenomenon, but Apple is hoping to make up for lost time with new characters designed to represent people with disabilities.
The 13 new emoji, which have been proposed to the folks at Unicode, show representations of wheelchair users as well as people with vision and hearing disabilities.
There’s a pair of super cute guide dogs and prosthetic arms and legs among the suggestions, which were first unveiled by BuzzFeed News.
Apple writes: “Currently, emoji provide a wide range of options, but may not represent the experiences of those with disabilities. Diversifying the options available helps fill a significant gap and provides a more inclusive experience for all.
“This is not meant to be a comprehensive list of all possible depictions of disabilities, but to provide an initial starting point for greater representation for diversity within the emoji universe.”
The emoji were developed with help from the Council of the Blind, the Cerebral Palsy Foundation, and the National Association of the Deaf, today’s report says.
The emoji could make it to iOS sooner rather than later. The next meeting of the Unicode Technical Committee takes place on April 3.
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Whether they’ll become part of the standard in time for the release of iOS 12 this autumn remains to be seen.
Over the last year we’ve seen gender neutral characters, as well as women wearing headscarves and a breastfeeding emoji.
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