Apple's New Emojis Are Diverse, LGBT-Friendly, And Self-Promotional All At Once
Get ready for a serious emoji update. On Monday, Apple released a new beta of iOS X that includes diverse emojis to developers today and avid emoji users are rejoicing — it's the result of over a year and a half of pleas, after all. There's no release date for iOS 8.3 yet, but Apple is reportedly planning a public beta program in March. The new emojis allow you to click and hold any character in the "people" section and choose a skin color from one of five options.
The same emojis are in the iOS 8.3 beta 2 released to testers. The new emojis also include updated technology, like the Apple Watch and iPhone 6 — yes, we see what you did there, Apple — and a lot of new country flags. And according to MacRumors, the new emoji set also includes more same-sex emoji couples and families, plus emojis without children.
In mid-March, according to 9 to 5 Mac, Apple plans to release public beta testing of its updated iOS through its AppleSeed program, allowing them to work out the kinks before it goes live for millions of users. Hopefully this will help avoid majors glitches like the thousands of iPhones briefly disconnected from mobile networks after the release of iOS 8.
The diverse Santas bring to mind Megyn Kelly's declaration that "Santa just is white" after a writer for Slate argued that Santa Claus shouldn't be a white man anymore, but a penguin instead. Perhaps Apple was inspired to create a more diverse Christmas.
Despite all the new additions, there were still some much needed emojis left out. I mean, where's the middle finger we've all been wishing for? A selfie emoji would come in handy most days and a pregnant emoji would make telling people about your impending motherhood that much easier. As far as animals go, there's still no turkey to text everyone on Thanksgiving and no duck for all the times you're eating foie gras.
Even without these, anyone who's ever been frustrated by the currently homogenous emoji characters (and those verging on racist — the Mexican emoji with a mustache, anyone?) will soon be able to send emojis of all ethnicities. But until then, we'll just have to wait in anticipation.