Google has launched new and improved default Android emoji, which are rolling out with the company’s new mobile operating system.
The platform’s current emoji style has long attracted ridicule, with users likening them to “thumb people”, mutant peanuts and misshapen, melted blobs.
Android O replaces the unusual, irregular emoji that arrived in KitKat, with much more orthodox-looking, circular versions.
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It could save users from potential embarrassment by ensuring they send the correct emoji to friends on other mobile platforms.
It was one of the smaller announcements at the I/O developer conference this week, and many Android users won’t even notice the change.
That’s because some Android device manufacturers, including Samsung and LG, have opted to replace Google’s default emoji with their own, much more regular-looking versions.
The announcement will please the majority of Pixel and Nexus users though, who will almost certainly be first in line for Android O when it’s released later this year.
However, they can get their hands on the new Android emoji early if they really want to.
Google has made available for Nexus 5X, Nexus 6P, Nexus Player, Pixel C, Pixel, and Pixel XL users to download.
Unfortunately, as the beta release is a work in progress, some of O’s features might not work as they’re supposed to.
Downloading it comes with risks, and doing so just for the emoji wouldn’t be the most sensible move.
We’d recommend downloading the Android O beta on a spare phone that you wouldn’t mind damaging.
Somewhat astonishingly, the emoji redesign process took Google 18 months.
“We wanted to make sure the system was ready to expand if we were to release wider representation of gender,” Gus Fonts, the product manager of Android, told .
“In the old set, the style we had wasn’t very adaptable.”