Apple is taking yet another leap toward making its emoji slate more inclusive with its latest release, which will feature “woman with headscarf” and “breastfeeding” icon options.
The update will also include a new “bearded person” emoji, more mythical creatures like “genie” and “zombie,” and expressive new smiley faces intended to convey such emotions and behaviors as “mind-blown” and “vomiting.”
The company previewed its new emoji on Monday in conjunction with World Emoji Day, which falls on July 17 because that’s the date depicted by the iOS calendar emoji. The newest additions will become available later this year.
Apple’s newest digital icons are in line with the company’s recent and largely praised moves to take emoji in a more universal direction.
Over the past half-decade, Apple has drastically expanded the diversity of its emoji palette in response to widespread requests for a more representative slate. After an update to include art for LGBTQ couples in 2012, African-American icons were added in 2014. An update in 2015 further expanded the skin tones on offer, and included five races all based on the Fitzpatrick scale, a skin color classification system developed in 1975.
Most recently, the 2016 update saw Apple equalizing its gender representation, adding gender options for single-parent families and new female athletes and professionals — leveling out the largely male representation among sports emojis.
Of the company’s shift toward more diverse digital representation, Apple’s vice president of worldwide corporate communications Katie Cotton told MTV back in 2014, “There needs to be more diversity in the emoji character set, and we have been working closely with the Unicode Consortium in an effort to update the standard.”
Other noteworthy icons in Apple’s 2017 update include new food entries (sandwich, coconut), new animals (zebra, T. rex), and additional new smileys (“starstruck”).