Approximately 1,500 new emojis are about to hit Facebook Messenger. But the most exciting news is that users will soon be able to choose a skin tone for the emojis.
Tony Leach of Facebook Messenger team noted that it is the first time an app for web browsers, iOS or Android will allow users to pick a skin tone when communicating via emojis.
The emojis will have the same look on both iOS and Android devices, Leach added, as the team fixed the problem. Leach also explained that the colorful digital images play a larger role now in digital communication. So, with the latest batch of emojis, the Facebook Messenger team planned to better reflect the real world.
When you chose a skin tone the app will remember it as your default option. Nevertheless, you can switch to other skin tones at anytime from the Settings menu. Among the 1,500 new emojis, there are also some interesting female characters.
There is a female cop, pedestrian, female runner, swimmer and surfer. The update includes an emoji assistant which will help users choose the emojis they want. You can access the new feature on the left of the composer.
The update will roll out next week, Facebook said. Messenger now has about 900 million users worldwide. In January, it had 800 million. Jonas Downey a developer at the Emojisaurus.com noted that emoji use has morphed into almost a full-fledged language.
With the yet-to-be-added emojis people will see that language extended so they can have “more dialect” as Downey puts it. Plus, the digital icons also make Messenger experience more fun, so people stay glued to their screens longer.
According to an internal report, 10 percent of Messenger texts now contain an emoji. About 90 percent of users admitted using the small characters. Women are the most likely to insert them in their messages with 78 percent using them, compared with 60 percent of men.
The first emojis, experts recalled, where white and male, but as years went by, people have called for more options. So, Messenger thought that extra skin colors and some female emojis may cater to nearly everyone’s needs.
The Unicode Consortium, which developed the standard language used in crafting emojis, is currently working on diversifying its emoji database as well. Google said last month that it would be a great idea to add female plumbers, IT experts and farmers to its apps.
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