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article imageEmojipedia adds trends to let you check which emoji are popular

By James Walker     May 24, 2017 in Technology
A new emoji tool hopes to help you avoid digital embarrassment by letting you know when your most frequented symbols are heading out of fashion. The current trends suggest you should be accompanying your tweets and messages with dog icons today.
The tool is part of Emojipedia, a site that aims to be a comprehensive search engine for all the official Unicode emoji. This week, the site rolled out a new trends feature that lets you keep tabs on the popularity of all its indexed emoji over time.
Trends can be accessed by browsing to any emoji page on the site. You then need to scroll down to the "Statistics" section and click "Trends." The site will display the interest in the emoji over the past few years as a graph, letting you see whether it's currently in vogue or one to avoid.
Emojipedia is sourcing its data from the search indexing power of Google Trends. This logs interest based on the number of Google searches each emoji receives. Records go back five years but require a few months of statistics to first be displayed. This means newer emoji might not display the graph yet.
Dog emoji popularity.
Dog emoji popularity.
The company hasn't detailed whether this is the best way of gauging popularity. Although Google's size and presence generally make it a good authority for trends, it's doubtful that many people actually use emoji in search queries.
Nonetheless, the data provides some high-level insights into the general trends in emoji usage across the years. It could help you to work out which to use in an effort to appear trendy. The graphs show how older, first-generation emoji have declined over time as fresher alternatives have been added to the Unicode index. With more symbols created every year, older ones are gradually fading away from the Internet.
Person tipping hand emoji popularity.
Person tipping hand emoji popularity.
According to Emojipedia, the best emoji to use right now is the dog. This has seen sustained interest over the past few months before spiking in popularity very recently. In contrast, the "person tipping hand" emoji, commonly referred to as "sassy girl," should be avoided. It has been gradually declining since peaking in 2014 and then again in 2015.
Although Emojipedia doesn't let you directly compare the popularity of two emoji, The Verge points out this can be achieved by visiting Google Trends directly. If you click the graph from Emojipedia, you'll be taken to the Trends page with the first emoji already filled in. You can then add a second to the screen to see which is holding up better over time.
Emoji in general are still seeing widespread success on mobile platforms. Vendors have made them a more important part of their products in recognition of their continued popularity. In a notable development for emoji fans on Android, Google recently announced it's embarking on a complete overhaul of its design. The result will be released with Android O this summer and will involve the departure of the long-criticised "blob" faces.
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