15 cool emojis coming to a phone near you

The Vulcan salute is only one example of a new set of emojis coming from Unicode 7.0. Find out what other symbols are coming to your smartphone.

Sarah Jacobsson Purewal Freelance Writer
Sarah is a freelance writer and CNET How To blogger. Her main focus is Windows, but she also covers everything from mobile tech to video games to DIY hardware projects. She likes to press buttons and see what happens, so don't let her near any control panels.
Sarah Jacobsson Purewal
2 min read

They'll look different when you finally see them in iOS or Android. Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

Emoji keyboards are changing fast -- Apple last month introduced multi-racial emojis and the (somewhat hidden) Vulcan salute emoji. But I'll let you in on a little secret: that "secret" Spock emoji isn't an Apple creation, it's part of a new batch of emojis released as part of the Unicode 7.0 update in 2014. Currently, iOS currently supports only one of the new symbols (the Vulcan salute), while Android and Windows Phone support none.

Both the same and different

Between smartphones, emojis are both wildly different and almost the same. Whether you use Android, iOS or Windows Phone 8.1, you'll see a core set of emoji symbols on your keyboard. For example, everyone has the kissing and crying face emojis and the see/hear/speak-no-evil monkeys.

The reason is that emoji symbols are actually coded into Unicode Standard. So, when you send an emoji from your iPhone to your friend's Android handset, you're sending not a picture but a code. The other phone translates that code into the corresponding emoji, which is why the kissing face on your iPhone doesn't look the same as the one on your friend's Android phone. In other words, it's the same emoji, but rendered differently between phones.

Many more to come

With Unicode 7, that stable of emojis will grow far beyond the Vulcan salute. Unfortunately, though, mobile phone operating systems are still stuck in Unicode 6. That means for the moment at least, you'll be missing out on a bunch of cool new emojis for almost any mood and situation. So, while we wait (iOS, Android and Windows Phone will get them eventually), here's a sneak peek at what's coming.

"Wind blowing face"

This will come in handy when you're making elaborate emoji pictures. Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

"Hot pepper"

Just think of all the innuendos you can make. Er, and references to Mexican food. Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

"Heart with tip on the left"

For when the regular straight-tipped heart feels too boring. Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

"Bouquet of flowers"

For when you mess up. Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

"Level slider"

"Turn up the music." "Turn down the lights." So many possibilities! Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

"Weight lifter"

Because sometimes it's important to convey exactly what you're doing at the gym. Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

"Building construction"

So you can complain about the construction that wakes you up every morning at 5 a.m. Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

"Derelict house building"

To warn people in horror movies. It's less frightening when you send an emoji, right? Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET


Because...I guess we need a chipmunk emoji. Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

"Om symbol"

Because there's no yoga emoji. Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

"Black skull and crossbones"

Death, poison, pirates...this emoji has it all. Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

"No piracy"

Just in case you had any ideas from that previous emoji. Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET


"Sorry I'm late, boss, there was an open man [hole] on the sidewalk." Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

"Man in business suit levitating"

??? Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

"World map"

Probably useful in some context. Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

You can check out the rest of the Unicode 7.0 emojis here, but you'll only see a bunch of squares if you don't have a compatible font (such as Symbola) installed on your PC or Mac. And even then you won't be able to see any of the new emojis on your mobile device, with the exception of the Vulcan salute emoji if you're on iOS.

To install Symbola on your PC, download the ZIP file here and extract the contents. Open up the File Explorer and go to C:\Windows\Fonts. Copy the Symbola TrueType font file into this folder.

To install Symbola on your Mac, download the ZIP file to your desktop and double-click it to unzip it. Double-click the font file to open a preview of the font; at the bottom of the preview, click Install font.