The Unicode Consortium will introduce a variety of racially and sexually inclusive emoji in 2019.
It’s a win for diversity! The Unicode Technical Committee has added a candidate emoji for a deaf person, and 55 variations of a couple holding hands. A large number of combinations accommodates different genders, skin tones, and sexual orientations. A new emoji — a standing person — will be used to create the couples. By placing two of these emoji side by side, they’ll merge into one, showing a couple holding hands. It’ll support the skin tone options already offered. The Unicode Consortium informed the new announcement through a blog post. According to the post, there are also a few new emoji geared specifically towards those with disabilities; there’s one proposed to represent a deaf person, along with mechanical arms and legs. These were initially proposed by Apple in March, and the Consortium largely accepted the proposal. The list will be finalised at a meeting this coming September. It has also narrowed down the shortlist of new emoji we’ll be seeing in 2019 to 179 in total.
However, the Consortium is already working on the emoji the users might be able to see in 2020, by adding eight more ‘provisional’ candidate emoji, namely a ninja, military helmet, mammoth, feather, dodo, magic wand, carpentry saw and screwdriver. More candidates will be collected through March, 2019. Unicode 11 should arrive on Apple platforms later this year. That’s not all, iOS, macOS, and watchOS will gain over 70 new emoji, presumably alongside the introduction of iOS 12, macOS Mojave, and watchOS 5.