Android head Hiroshi Lockheimer confirmed that new emoji are on the way to Android, with Nexus devices receiving the update next week. Examples of the new emoji are a lion’s face, a unicorn and even a middle finger. Hiroshi also revealed that as part of the Unicode 8.0 update, the change requires a “new code, new font and new keyboard”; which means new system image is on the way as well.
Android is currently using Unicode 6.0 for emojis, which is two versions away from its iOS counterpart. While iOS has already been updated to the new standard.
Phones from other OEMs will likely receive the updated a little later, as Lockheimer stated that they “decide their own update schedules”. They presumably need the time to apply contents of the update with their own themes. Furthermore, as far as any other changes, Lockheimer declined to “spoil the surprise” when one Twitter user asked if bug fixes will also be included in the Unicode 8.0 update.
For those who doesn’t own a Nexus device yet, they would have to wait for the manufacturer to push the upgrade next week. Aside of that, it is good news to hear Android catching up on its Unicode support.