17th July marks World Emoji Day across the globe. In today's day and age, every digital user makes use of emojis in their daily lives when communicating via instant messages, email or various social media platforms. These little icons are seen as an extension of every language and are used to express different emotions.

How it all started (ツ)

With the rise of SMS technology and online chatrooms in the 1990s, the most primitive versions of emojis were used and were known as emoticons. These were used in messages to express simple emotions, known more commonly as the smileys.

These emoticons were formed by creatively using various combinations of keyboard characters to represent feelings:

  • :-) - smile
  • :( - sad face
  • :'( - crying
  • :O - surprise
  • ;) - wink


❤☀☂ The First Emojis ❤☀☂

The word emoji can be defined as "a small digital image or icon used to express an idea or emotion in electronic communication."

In 1999 Japanese artist, Shigetaka Kurita, a developer at i-mode, a Japanese mobile platform wanted to create an attractive way to convey feelings and expressions through text. He came up with a list of Unicode icons which used symbols to express these words or emotions, much like the ones pictured below.

Following its first release, emojis took off in a significant way across Japan. i-mode's competitors started duplicating the idea, and soon the news and methodology spread to international territories. Companies such as Apple and Microsoft began to incorporate emojis into their platforms.

Fast-forward to 2018 and emojis are part of everyday life and even an official work in the Oxford dictionary. In fact in 2015 for the first time, an emoji called 'Face with Tears of Joy' was the Oxford Dictionaries word of the year! The emoji, pictured below, won this title for its tremendous growth in use across 2015.

tears of joy

Uses of Emojis Today

It's 2018, and emojis have endless uses. They are even used as teaching tools to captivate the mind of young audiences, see celebrity scientist, Bill Nye The Science Guys, explain Evolution using Emojis below:


In fact, emojis is a valuable marketing tool used across various messaging and social media platforms to add a cheeky flavour to campaigns. See how international brands make use of them below:




Happy International Emoji From iTouch Messaging

Wishing you all a happy Emoji day from the iTouch team. If you are looking for some more info on how we can help you get creative with your SMS or mobile marketing campaigns, feel free to contact us here.