“The Emoji Movie” may have spectacularly flopped just a couple of months ago, garnering a big pile of poo from both critics and audiences foolish enough to give such an absurd concept a chance, but the actual ideograms and smileys originating in Japan in the late 1990s are still as popular worldwide as always.
In fact, they’re so beloved by today’s mobile device and desktop users that Apple has dedicated two official newsroom updates to them in the past three months alone just to preview what’s coming later in the year to iPhones and iPads all around.
After a celebratory but vague World Emoji Day announcement back in July, Cupertino made things a little more specific ahead of the now concluded weekend, confirming “hundreds of new emoji” will be offered with the iOS 11.1 update to eligible iDevices soon. How soon? Well, both developer and public beta testers will be able to preview the fun new symbols later this week, and if everything goes smoothly, iOS 11 is likely to move one full point up in its quest to vanquish all bugs by the end of October.
Meanwhile, “upcoming software updates” for macOS and watchOS should bring the same massive slate of refreshed emoji to your wrists and big screens at some point in the near future.
Headliners and standouts include “more emotive smiley faces”, gender-neutral characters like vampires and fairies, clothing options to keep you warm during the cold season, various new food types (ethnic and generic greens), animals, mythical creatures and more. Also, a simple way to say “I love you”, based on the American Sign Language gesture.