Emoji diversity a pressing problem: Apple is working on it

Placeholder menus for different varieties of the same emoji suggest that Apple is implementing the color system the Unicode Consortium drafted last fall.

Photos for OS X is the biggest change introduced in the first beta build of OS X 10.10.3, but the folks at MacRumors have discovered another: preliminary support for better diversity in emoji.

The implementation looks like the one laid out in a Unicode Consortium draft proposal published in November. That proposal calls for a selection of five color swatches, which, when combined with a “base” emoji like a man or woman’s face, can change that emoji to display different skin and hair colors. Apple’s early implementation is full of blank and placeholder images, but it looks like certain emoji are getting a dropdown menu that will allow users to choose from among several versions of the same basic emoji.

The update also includes other placeholders at the top level that aren’t hidden behind drop-down menus—though there’s no indication of what these empty spaces represent, the odds are good that Apple is planning to add support for the 250 new emoji added with Unicode 7.0 back in June of 2014…

See what Apple haters are missing? Already, I have I noticed that Apple (even my three-year-old iPad) displays Unicode characters that Chrome and even Firefox will not display.

💙 ← Take the test: can you see the blue heart?