iOS 8.3 will be a welcome update for those of us who are totally bored with the current set of emojis we have at our disposal. We’ve been using for what seems like aeons. They were always inadequate, but now they are also over-used and out-of-date.
Apple’s release of the new iOS (expected in a few months and currently in beta) will feature 300 new emojis, including icons for iMac (at last!) iPhone 6, iWatch, same-sex couples and mixed race couples. There’s also a wider representation of world flags and six new skin tones. There has apparently been some negative comment about the ‘controversial’ yellow skin tone. However, it is based on the Fitzpatrick Classification Scale founded by dermatologist Thomas Fitzpatrick at Harvard Medical School in 1975. So they say. Anyway, much work has gone into the emojis, developed with Unicode to work across devices and platforms.
Icons of different race and sexual orientation are selected on your iPhone or iPad by holding down a finger on an emoji and selecting from the multiple choices, much like using accents of different languages. On your Mac, mouse over the arrow to reveal available options.
Reaction to the new emojis has been quite hilarious. There is outrage that there is “still no taco emoji”, for example. Someone else lamented the lack of a volleyball icon (!?) and there was an impassioned plea from someone wanting something rather rude.
I like the new thumbs up emojis in various colours and the ethnic Santas and cops. I’m also pleased that there are people of differing ages represented and even some bald men! Being a nature-lover I hope there will be more flora and fauna represented, particularly badgers and dogs. Oh, and let’s hope there are some decent shoes and handbags…