Last month, Google announced a revamp of all its emoji — nearly 1,000 characters — coming to Android 12 this fall and Chrome OS 92. These new emoji designs are also set to arrive in Google Chat over the coming weeks.

Google set out to make its emoji more “globally relevant” to ensure that a particular design makes sense for everyone. For example, Google previously used a slice of pumpkin pie to present all types of pies. The character has been updated to be a whole one that can stand for any flavor/filling.

Another aim was to make characters larger and have them take better advantage of the tiny space they can occupy. This is seen in the vehicle emoji, while several others are now more realistic. Food also got a general upgrade towards realism.

In Google Chat, emojis serve as “reactions.” Long pressing on messages in the mobile client reveals a menu with “Add reaction” at the top. The addition of Unicode 13.1 emoji revamps this page slightly, with the list now featuring a “Recently used” section. That’s followed by a lengthy grid organized by nine categories with a tap of the bottom bar quickly moving you to the relevant characters.

Other cited changes include the “addition of a gender-neutral option for gender-modifiable emojis,” while “emoji skin tone and gender preferences are saved per individual emoji.”

These trio of updates are rolling first to Google Chat for Android and will be fully available over the coming weeks. The web and iOS clients will also get these additions in a similar timeframe. 

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Abner Li

Editor-in-chief. Interested in the minutiae of Google and Alphabet. Tips/talk: abner@9to5g.com