Every year, the Unicode consortium makes one of the hardest decisions in world politics: which new emojis to add to the official list used around the world.
Emoji Version 15.0 was agreed upon in September 2022, and has already been implemented in the latest Android releases – but Apple typically takes its time before updating the iOS emoji roster. This year, that change is included in the iOS 16.4 update, which at the time of writing is around a week away from public release.
With the choice of emojis already somewhat overwhelming, and the last few years dedicated to diversity and inclusivity, some would argue there’s not much left to add. That sentiment is reflected in a relatively small update this year of just 31 new icons – or 21 if you don’t count each skin tone variant. However, a few of the new icons have been much requested over the years, giving fans something to post a happy emoji about.
So what’s new?
There’s just one new smiley this year: a shaking head. We’ve also got three new hearts in various colors – can you believe there wasn’t a plain pink one until now? – and new hand gestures that can be combined to make a high five.
There are new animals, foods, and objects, plus a couple of new symbols. We’re particularly pleased to see jellyfish, peas, and maracas make an appearance. Check out the full selection below and remember to update to iOS 16.4 as soon as possible to unlock the new emojis.