New Apple emoji available now but be careful

The new Apple iOS 14.2 adds 117 new emoji to use but be careful now you use them because not even all iPhone and iPad can handle them, let alone non-Apple devices.  We explain how they work, how the emoji appear on receiving devices and include a full list of the newcomers.

The new emoji in the font included with the latest iOS 14.2 (available now for compatible iPhone and iPad).  The same emoji font will be in the upcoming Mac OS 11 (Big Sur).

The new emoji include a dodo, black cat, fly, seal, green olives,blueberries, teapot, bubble tea and pinched fingers (gesture for ‘seven’ in some parts of China).

Disguised Face is what most of us would call a ‘Groucho Face’ (cue ‘Hooray for Captain Spaulding’) or a Rod Quantock’s Bus face.

At long last there’s a Boomerang emoji to go with other Australiana like the Kangaroo and Koala emoji.

A newly changed emoji is ‘Face with Medical Mask’ which is now smiling, instead of a tear.

The new emoji are from Unicode’s Emoji 13.0 listing approved in late January 2020.  iOS supports emoji with the Apple Color Emoji font.

Why new emoji don’t always appear

The newest emoji won’t appear on other Apple devices which haven’t had the same upgrade.   Without the upgrade the receivers will see either black bars (no equivalent emoji) or the older version (e.g. medical mask or black cat).

Test email sent from an iPad with iOS 14.2 (left) to an iPhone with the older iOS 14.1 (right)

It’s a similar problem sending a message from an iOS 14.2 device to a MacOS computer which hasn’t got Big Sur. 

Same test email sent from an iPad with iOS 14.2 to Outlook for Mac on MacOS Catalina (the current public release)

Windows and other non-Apple devices

Even when an emoji is supported on the receiving device, it may look quite different.  That’s because it’s using a different emoji font, drawn by a completely different set of artists. Here’s the same test email, sent from iOS 14.2 to the latest Windows 10 which doesn’t have a font with the same updated emoji.

Same test email sent from an iPad with iOS 14.2 to Outlook for Windows on Windows 10 (the current public release)

Medical Mask and Black Cat appear but looking very different to the Apple versions.  That’s because the Windows emoji font hasn’t yet been updated with the Emoji 13.0 changes and the emoji are drawn differently.

The other three emoji don’t yet exist in the Windows emoji font (usually Segoe Color Emoji but not always) so only black rectangles appear.

All the new iOS 14.2 emoji

Here are all the new iOS 14.2 emoji, courtesy of Emojipedia.org

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