Earlier this month Unicode posted proposed update details to Technical Report 51 — a document that describes emoji standards. The draft is on Unicode's upcoming Emoji version 4.0, which is scheduled for release in November. The review period for Emoji 4.0 closes in another two months and users can submit feedback directly to Unicode.
Five noteworthy changes in the proposed Emoji 4.0 update includes gendered emojis, new professional emojis, new flags, upgrades to non-emoji characters and additional support for skin tones.
The gendered emojis are male and female versions of already existing ones. The desk man, guardswoman, female runner, female police officer and man with bunny ears will get their male/female variants in this update, reports Emojipedia, which first spotted the development.
Apple's upcoming major software update to iOS, which is still in its beta stage, already has these characters. Emojis with human appearances will get their variants for both genders, although there are exceptions in the case of the pregnant woman and man with gua pi mao.
Emojis of professions that are part of the new version, were initially recommended by Google in its expanding emoji professions proposal in May. After the emojis were referred to the Unicode Emoji Subcommittee, Apple requested the addition of five more in August, which includes artists, firefighter, pilot, astronaut, and judge.
The 16 professional emojis in the latest update are health worker, judge, pilot, farmer, cook, student, singer, artist, teacher, factory worker, technologist, office worker, mechanic, scientist, astronaut and firefighter.
The upcoming version also brings an upgrade to the existing characters in the form of the female sign, male sign and staff of Aesculapius. All these are expected to be part of the previously listed Emoji ZWI sequence for gender and professions.
With Emoji 4.0, as many as 10 existing emojis will get support for skin tone modification. They are man with bunny ears, man and woman holding hands, two women holding hands, two men holding hands, wrestlers, snowboarder, golfer, sleeping accommodation, man in business suit levitating and family.