Emoji are the de facto standard for emoting in conversations (and wallpapers) without using words. Thanks to the Unicode Consortium, the body dedicated to maintaining the international standard for symbols used in conversations, we now have an adequate selection of emoji to pick from. The catalog keeps expanding annually, and this year’s draft with 108 new emoji is now under consideration.
The Emoji 15.1 standard due for release in September this year has now been drafted, and the Consortium is reviewing all the submitted emoji. Considering the body has not rejected any of the suggested artwork since 2019, Emojipedia provides us a good look at what should be the new emoji coming to Android, Windows, iOS, and other operating systems (via PhoneArena). The new emoji are:
- Head shaking horizontally (🙂+↔️)
- Head shaking vertically (🙂+↕️)
- Phoenix bird (🐦+🔥)
- Lime (🍋+🟩)
- Brown mushroom (🍄+🟫)
- Broken chain (🔗+💥)
- Family silhouette: Adult, Adult, Child (👪)
- Family silhouette: Adult, Child, Child
- Family silhouette: Adult, Child
- Family silhouette: Adult, Adult, Child, Child
- Person walking (directional) (🚶)
- Person running (directional) (🏃)
- Person kneeling (directional) (🧎)
- Person with white cane (directional)
- Person in a manual wheelchair (directional)
- Person in a motorized wheelchair (directional)
The Emoji 15.1 additions in iOS art style imagined by Emojipedia’s Joshua Jones
Until now, companies like Apple, Google, and Microsoft who were responsible for implementing these emoji had the freedom to choose the art style and direction of some emoji. However, this is the first time the Consortium is specifying a direction for emoji, like Person walking left and Person walking right. All these emoji with persons are also available in the standard range of skin tones. With all these variations considered, the Emoji 15.1 draft has 108 new characters. When implementing these in their OSes, artists will have the freedom to mirror existing emoji or create new art altogether.
Interestingly, all the emoji in this list are created using zero-width joiner (ZWJ) sequences, meaning every new emoji can be represented as a combination of two existing emoji. For instance, we can represent Lime as a combination of 🍋 (lemon) and 🟩 (green square). The family silhouette emoji are gender-neutral by design, to promote inclusivity, and this is the first time the Consortium has specified directions for full-body emoji.
The emoji could change by the time the draft is approved, but these are the new characters coming, and you will soon be able to use them on your phones and computers.