Monday, May 22, 2017

Unicode Emoji submission deadline now July 1

The next emoji character submission deadline has been moved up to July 1, 2017 to accommodate upcoming changes in the release schedule for Unicode versions. Emoji character proposals submitted before July 1 are eligible to be considered for the 2018 version of Unicode, those submitted after that date will be considered earliest for the 2019 version.

The change in deadline only affects proposals for new emoji characters; proposals that don’t involve new characters — such as for new ZWJ sequences or subdivision flags — are unaffected by the change in deadline.

The annual Unicode Standard release is being shifted from June to early March to to better align with product development schedules across the industry, especially for mobile products. This shift will not fully take effect until 2019, but in preparation for this change the submission date for emoji character proposals is being adjusted now.

The 239 new emoji are also now available for adoption to help the Unicode Consortium’s work on digitally disadvantaged languages.

[emoji 23f3 image]

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Unicode Emoji 5.0 specification now final

The new Emoji 5.0 set was finalized in March 2017, making it available for vendors to begin working on their emoji fonts and code ahead of the release of Unicode 10.0, scheduled for June 2017.

The Emoji 5.0 specification is now final as well. The specification has become a technical standard, adding conformance clauses and enhanced syntax definitions. A general mechanism for emoji tag sequences has been added, initially used for country subdivisions such as Scotland. The Emoji_Component property has been added, for filtering out characters from keyboard palettes. The design and usage guidelines have also been enhanced.

The 239 new emoji are also now available for adoption to help the Unicode Consortium’s work on digitally disadvantaged languages.

[emoji 1f92b image]

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Last Call on Unicode 10.0 Beta Review

U10 beta image The beta review period for Unicode 10.0 and related technical standards will close on May 1, 2017. This is the last opportunity for technical comments before version 10.0 is released in Q2 2017. Implementers and interested parties are encouraged to download data files, review proposed updates, and submit comments soon.

In addition to the Unicode Standard proper, three other Unicode Technical Standards have significant text and data file updates that are correlated with the new additions for Unicode 10.0.0. Review of that text and data is also encouraged during the beta review period.

UTS #10, Unicode Collation Algorithm Data files
UTS #39, Unicode Security Mechanisms Data files
UTS #46, Unicode IDNA Compatibility Processing Data files

Additional documents are available for public review and will be discussed at the May UTC meeting, such as the final Emoji 5.0 text, and a proposed Unicode character property. For more information, see the open public review issues and the UTC document registry.

The Unicode Standard is the foundation for all modern software and communications around the world, including all modern operating systems, browsers, laptops, and smart phones—plus the Internet and Web (URLs, HTML, XML, CSS, JSON, etc.). The Unicode Standard, its associated standards, and data form the foundation for CLDR and ICU releases. Thus it is important to ensure a smooth transition to each new version of the standard.

Unicode 10.0 includes a number of changes. Some of the Unicode Standard Annexes have modifications for Unicode 10.0, often in coordination with changes to character properties. In particular, there are changes to UAX #14, Unicode Line Breaking Algorithm, UAX #29, Unicode Text Segmentation, and UAX #31, Unicode Identifier and Pattern Syntax. In addition, UAX #50, Unicode Vertical Text Layout, has been newly incorporated as a part of the standard. Four new scripts have been added in Unicode 10.0, including NĂ¼shu. There are also 56 additional emoji characters, a major new extension of CJK ideographs, and 285 hentaigana, important historic variants for Hiragana syllables.

Please review the documentation, adjust your code, test the data files, and report errors and other issues to the Unicode Consortium by May 1, 2017. Feedback instructions are on the beta page.

See for more information about testing the 10.0.0 beta.

See for the current draft summary of Unicode 10.0.0.

About the Unicode Consortium

The Unicode Consortium is a non-profit organization founded to develop, extend and promote use of the Unicode Standard and related globalization standards.

The membership of the consortium represents a broad spectrum of corporations and organizations, many in the computer and information processing industry. Members include: Adobe, Apple, EmojiXpress, Facebook, Google, Government of Bangladesh, Government of India, Huawei, IBM, Microsoft, Monotype Imaging, Netflix, Sultanate of Oman MARA, Oracle, Rajya Marathi Vikas Sanstha, SAP, Symantec, Tamil Virtual University, The University of California (Berkeley), plus well over a hundred Associate, Liaison, and Individual members. For a complete member list go to

Monday, April 17, 2017

ICU 59 Released

ICU LogoUnicode® ICU 59 has just been released! ICU is the main avenue for many software products and libraries to support the world's languages, implementing both the latest version of the Unicode encoding standard and of the Unicode locale data (CLDR).

ICU 59 upgrades to CLDR 31 and to emoji 5.0 data, together with segmentation and bidi updates from Unicode 10 beta. The Java code for number formatting has been completely rewritten for reliability and performance. There is also a new case mapping API for styled text, and a technology preview of enhanced language matching.

There are major changes for ICU4C that will make ICU easier to use but require changes in projects using ICU: C++11, char16_t, UTF-8 source files.

For details please see

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Call for Unicode 10.0 Cover Design Art

 [cover1] The Unicode Consortium is inviting artists and designers to submit cover design proposals for Version 10.0 of The Unicode Standard.

The cover design will appear on the Unicode Standard 10.0 web page, in the print-on-demand publication, and in associated promotional literature on the Unicode website. The chosen artist will receive full credit in the colophon of the publication, and wherever else the design appears, and receive $700. The two runner-up artists will receive $150 apiece.

Please see the announcement web page for requirements and more details.