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Google's Android O changes 'blob' emoji to more iOS-like circular shape

With Android O, due later this year, Google will be changing the look of its emoji to a look more consistent with the icons seen in Apple's iOS 10.

Image Credit: Emojipedia

Image Credit: Emojipedia


Previous versions of Android have often used a "blob" or "gumdrop" shape for characters, cut off at the bottom, Emojipedia noted. While Google has gradually steered away from this, smileys continue to use the aesthetic in Android 7 —as of O, they will finally adapt the fully round shape seen in iOS, as well as other platforms.

Google is also reportedly redesigning other characters, adding outlines and gradients, and using colors it previously avoided like pink or red. It will also include every character from Emoji 5.0, some of them borrowed from the Unicode 10 standard, which is still in beta. Apple's "iOS 11" —set to be revealed at WWDC 2017 on June 5 —will presumably get similar compatibility.

Some of the new Emoji 5.0 characters. | Image Credit: Emojipedia

Some of the new Emoji 5.0 characters. | Image Credit: Emojipedia


Significantly, people with older versions of Android will be able to download new emoji sets, keeping them up-to-date in that arena even if their phone can't upgrade to O.

Google revealed Android O at the beginning of its annual I/O conference on Wednesday. Some bigger changes will include speed boosts, notification dots, picture-in-picture video, smart data autofill in apps, and more.

"iOS 11" features are still largely a mystery, but may include a redesigned Music app highlighting video, and improved Siri capabilities across the board.