Fact Check

Will a Multi-Skin-Toned Handshake Emoji Be Available in 2022?

The Unicode Consortium will be rolling out an emoji update sometime in 2022.

Published May 2, 2021

A handshake emoji featuring two hands whose skin tone can be individually modified will be available once the next Unicode update is released.

On April 30, 2021, several tech news outlets reported that "a multi-skin toned handshake emoji is coming in 2022."

This assertion is true. The news was announced by Google in a blog post published that day. According to Google, Jennifer Daniel, the company's creative director for emoji, "submitted paperwork for Unicode to consider the addition of the multi-skin toned handshake" in November 2019. "The proposal detailed how to create 25 possible combinations of different skin tones shaking hands," Google said:

The Unicode Consortium oversees a standardized system, Unicode, that assigns "a unique number for every character, no matter what the platform, program, or language is" and accepts submissions from the public for new emojis. According to Google, Unicode accepted the handshake emoji proposal, and it will be included in the Unicode Consortium's next emoji update, expected to be released sometime in 2022.

Because the news has been confirmed by Google and Unicode, we rate the claim that this new multi-toned handshake emoji is on its way as "True."

Alex Kasprak is an investigative journalist and science writer reporting on scientific misinformation, online fraud, and financial crime.