It’s World Emoji Day. Aren’t you all really excited? If you can contain yourselves we’ll proceed and discuss the new emoji that will arrive with the forthcoming iOS 13 and Android Q operating systems.
There are 230 new additions coming this autumn, as part of the Emoji 12.0 release approved by the Unicode Consortium, which practically runs the show when it comes to emoji.
The theme this year, once again, seems to be a drive towards greater inclusivity. Apple personally proposed more a greater range of disability-themed emoji and they’ll arrive in iOS 13 and Android Q with a new guide dog, an ear with a hearing aid, a visually impaired person, a hearing impaired person, wheelchairs, a prosthetic arm and a prosthetic leg coming to the emoji keyboard.
Following on from the recent addition of same sex hand-holding couples, there’s now a much wider range of couples, inclusive of different skin tones. Apple will have 75 possible combinations in iOS 13, while Google will offer 71 couples with combinations in Android Q.
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So, what else to we have? Well there’s a period emoji and the pinching fingers emoji, which will doubtless be used to connote a tiny penis. Beyond the body, there’s a sloth and an otter, a flamingo and a skunk. Food wise, we’ve got butter, garlic, waffles and falafel. There’s a banjo, a stethoscope, a kite, a snorkel mask, ballet shoes, a razor and, erm, some y-fronts. For all you romantics out there, there’s a new down-on-one-knee emoji.
Here’s what Google has to say on the matter: “We’re supporting 53 emojis with gender inclusive designs. For example, the emoji for “police officer” is commonly displayed as male and “person getting haircut” is female. These kinds of design decisions can reinforce gender stereotypes so with this update, emojis that don’t specify gender will default to a gender-ambiguous design. You can still choose between male and female presentations if want to opt into a gender on your keyboard.”
Apple seems pretty pleased with itself too. In a blog post, the company wrote: “To celebrate World Emoji Day, Apple is previewing a selection of new emoji coming this fall, revealing the newest designs that bring even more diversity to the keyboard, alongside fun and exciting additions to popular categories of food, animals, activities and smiley faces.”