Amid the many announcements made at today’s Google I/O conference — we’ve summed up the key points for you here — is one unexpectedly tragic death: Google quietly announced it is killing off its blob-shaped emoji in favor of a more, well, perfectly round set.
The new emoji will arrive with Android O, Google’s latest operating system, which is currently in beta testing. The redesign, as noted by Emojipedia, will be fully compatible with Emoji 5.0. Which means users will finally get that breastfeeding mom, and the elf, and the hedgehog, and a whole bunch of new foods and weirdly mythical stuff. But the blobs will be no more. And so, we must mourn them.
The blob emoji were born just four short years ago. Designed and introduced at Google I/O 2013, the weird-shaped little yellow faces were the brainchildren of design agency IC4DESIGN. From there, they evolved, and the blob-shaped emoji faces got legs and arms, and hopped on snowboards and did the tango — rose in mouth included — across Gchats and Android phones. The blobs were Google’s thing. And, oh, how we loved them. Or, at least, tolerated them. By 2016, the blobs had fallen on hard times. As also noted by Emojipedia, Google bowed to Unicode recommendations and began making its human emoji like actual humans. Which left only the faces — the best emoji — styled as blobs. A design tweak last year meant the blobs became more like gumdrops, shorter and squatter than their predecessors. But still, they were blobs. Until today, the day the blob music died.
The change won’t fully take effect until Android O — which has yet to be given a formal name — is officially released. Google has not announced when that will be, though industry speculation is sometime this fall. At which point, the blob emoji will join Gchat in Google heaven, where their souls will, hopefully, finally be at peace.