Finally Diverse Emojis

I give Apple a thumbs up too. Finally they are updating their emojis to include people of color. The next software update will include six different skin tones for emojis such as the princess and construction worker. There will also be a thumbs down option, more countries flags and diverse same sex couples included in the 300 new emojis in the IOS 8.3 update.

I did not understand why Apple did not create diverse emojis from the start, until I learned that a Japanese company created the emojis. Therefore, the emojis were specific to Japanese culture. What I always thought were prayer hands were actually meant to be a high five and the guy I viewed as “clueless” with lines coming out of his head is actually supposed to be a man bowing.

An African company, Oju Africa, started to create diverse emojis in 2012, but wasn’t planning on launching them until April 10. Once celebrities such as Miley Cyrus came out last month about the need for diverse emojis and the #EmojiEthnicityUpdate went viral, they sped up their launch date to be sure everyone knew they did it first. So far they have had 16,000 downloads.

Timing in business is essential and even though Oju Africa did it first, they will not be the last. I’m glad companies are taking progressive steps toward. Yet, it shouldn’t have taken this long to happen.


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