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Apple Planning to Add More Diversity to Emoji Character Set


macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001

Apple has plans to expand its emoji set to include emojis that are non-caucasian, according to Apple's vice president of worldwide corporate communications, Katie Cotton, who spoke to MTV Act (via The Verge). The company says it is working with the Unicode Consortium to add more characters to its emoji offerings.

"Tim forwarded your email to me. We agree with you. Our emoji characters are based on the Unicode standard, which is necessary for them to be displayed properly across many platforms. There needs to be more diversity in the emoji character set, and we have been working closely with the Unicode Consortium in an effort to update the standard."
After originating in Japan, emoji were incorporated into Unicode, which allowed them to be used on multiple platforms. The character set has largely featured caucasian icons, however, which Apple aims to change.

Apple's last change to emojis came with iOS 6, when the company added additional characters and made emoji accessible to all users. Previously, special apps were required to access emoji on iOS. iOS 7, released in late 2013, did not include any new emoji, but it is possible Apple could make some changes to the characters with iOS 8 later this year.

Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.

Article Link: Apple Planning to Add More Diversity to Emoji Character Set


macrumors regular
Mar 23, 2014
Cork asian; an Irish Indian :p

Better not upset the PC crowd - better create smileys for EVERY civilisation, if this is to be taken seriously, or there'll be a riot at PC-correctness towers.



macrumors Core
Nov 14, 2011
So will we have as many new emoji as Facebook has gender options?


macrumors 68000
Feb 19, 2006
Dearborn (Detroit), MI, USA

The best part is that in a 6-12 months we can see a follow up article that tells us that it finally happened and it'll had links back to this one ("as previously mentioned").

I used to get SO excited when I'd see new MacRumors articles in my feedreader...



macrumors 68000
May 17, 2010
Gosh, the cartoon faces in that picture are hideous. I think I'd consider it an honour not to have my ethnic group featured in that style!


macrumors 65816
Jun 30, 2007
This is THE feature that's finally going to get Android users to switch over to iOS!!!

Any characters added to Unicode would also be available for other platforms to use, so unless Google is anti-diversity they'll get them too (but you might need to buy a new phone to get the update).

I think this is going to make it more necessary to rethink how emoji is accessed on the keyboard though. It's already a pain to switch keyboard sets back and forth. There should be an emoji button on the main language keyboards, and perhaps text shortcodes like :grin or :cat to quickly substitute them in without having to hunt for the icon.


Dec 6, 2012
We don't need more races, we need more yellow faces and animals!

That is a racist comment... we need green faces too, and blue... oh and don't forget purple and red. I mean those are the colors that MacRumor uses. Basically, we should have all the emoticons in all 64 colors from the 64 crayon Crayola box.

On a more serious note, it seems to me that in my circle it is only the younger in the crowd that use pictorial emoticons. At best, my group has mastered the text based smiley face. Although there is a debate between :) and :) among the less techy folks in the group.
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