Emoji images seem to have been around forever. In fact, they first appeared in Japan way back at the end of the 20th century and were incorporated in Apple phones and other devices as recently as 2011.
However, it is only now that the issue of producing more racially diverse emoji has been addressed. The developers at the Unicode Consortium have been working on this subject and have come up with 5 different shades of skin to be used,. These colours have all been based on the Fitzpatrick scale classification for human skin tones.
The first place you will see then is likely to be on an Apple device, as the company is rolling them out in the US and then the UK as a beta test version just now. They will initially only be available to designated testers using iPhones and iPads, with no fixed date given for when they will be available for general use by everyone.
300 New Characters
Along with the new skin colours that will sit alongside the traditional yellow emoji, there are other changes in the 300 new characters being added to the list of options. Among these, there are same sex relationship symbols, with the likes of families made up to two fathers of two mothers. 32 New country flags are also being added to the mix.
What do you think of the new range of racially diverse emoji? Are there other characters you think should be added as well?