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Apple and Google show off their more inclusive emoji for 2019

Expect them to show up in iOS 13 and Android Q.
Jon Fingas, @jonfingas
July 16, 2019
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The Unicode Consortium teased the next round of emoji additions for 2019, and now it's clear just what they'll look like when they reach your phone. Both Apple and Google are marking World Emoji Day (July 17th) by showing their adaptations of the dozens of emoji characters coming to their platforms later in the year -- you can find a few of Apple's examples above, and Google's below. In both cases, the focuses are on inclusivity and a bit of whimsy.

You'll see more characters for accessibility, such as guide dogs, wheelchairs and prosthetic limbs. Also, the well-known "holding hands" emote now includes many more combinations of skin colors and gender. You can also find India-focused emotes like a Hindu temple, a Diya lamp and a sari. On the silly side, you can expect animals like sloths, otters and flamingos, not to mention underpants and yo-yos.

Apple will only say that the new emoji are coming as part of a software update in the fall, but that's basically shorthand for the releases of iOS 13, iPadOS, macOS Catalina and watchOS 6. The Google-inclined, meanwhile, will have to either try the Android Q beta or wait for Q's finished release to reach their hardware in the months ahead.

In the meantime, the Unicode crew isn't standing still. It's talking about a possible mechanism that would let you modify the color of non-human emoji. You could have a black cat, or show white whine instead of red. The system could come as soon as the Unicode 13.0 spec (that is, 2020), but it's not set in stone just yet.

Android Q emoji for accessibility

Android Q emoji for animals

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