Are you a fan of emojis and always looking for the perfect one for every text conversation? You’ll be happy to know that the Unicode Consortium, the non-profit in charge of software standardization, approved a list of 59 new unique emojis and variations of existing emojis. That brings the total to 230 for this year. The Unicode Consortium is comprised of voting members from big companies like Adobe, Apple, Google, and more, so the emojis will appear on a wide variety of phone platforms, not just iPhones.
The history of the emoji can be traced back to 1881 before smartphones were even a concept. They appeared in Puck magazine and were simply punctuation marks arranged to represent faces. In 1998, an engineer at a Japanese phone company created the first 176 picture icons. He called them “emojis,” a word he made combining the words “e,” which means “picture,” and “moji,” which means “character.”
In 2009, a group of engineers asked that the Unicode Standard – which was created to help standardize different texts and languages across all computers and devices – recognize emojis. In 2010, Unicode accepted it, and every year since, the library of emojis grows.
In 2015, different skin tones were added, while the next few years brought better representation of female and gender-inclusive icons, food, and animals like hedgehogs, llamas, and mosquitoes. This year, more emojis representing disabilities will be present, which was a suggestion by Apple. You’ll also see more skin tone combinations for the holding-hands emoji.
More animals, food, and other objects will be rolled out, including:
- Guide dog
- Garlic clove
- Hindu temple
- Diya lamp
- One-piece bathing suit