In case there weren’t enough emoji already, Apple’s Genmoji uses AI to generate even more

Currently, Unicode 15.1 supports just shy of 3,800 various emoji. But for everyone out there that for some reason thinks that’s not nearly enough, today at WWDC 2024, Apple announced the ability to use AI to generate unique emoji based on your prompts.

Called Genmoji, which looks to be an awful portmanteu of the words “generate” and “emoji,” these new creations are powered by Apple Intelligence, which is a new collection of AI features coming to the iPhone, iPad and Mac sometime later this year. Similar to creating images with services like Midjourney and Dall-E, users will be able to whip up custom emoji by inputting specific prompts. Once made, they can be shared with others as stickers, reactions in a Tapback or simply embedded in-line in messages.

A demo of Apple Intelligence being used to make a custom Genmoji.A demo of Apple Intelligence being used to make a custom Genmoji.


While the feature isn’t expected to be officially available until later this fall, there don’t seem to be any major limitations to what you can dream up. In a teaser at WWDC, Apple showed examples like a smiley face with cucumbers over its eyes and a T-rex riding a skateboard while wearing a tutu. That said knowing Apple, there is sure to be some restrictions for Genmoji made using more graphic prompts like guns or blood.

Now on some level, it could be fun to razz your friends with Genmoji based on their latest mishap. But at the same time, part of the magic of emoji has always been being able to convey a message using the limited number of icons while still getting your point across. Also, it’s truly hard to imagine how much added value a bagel with lox Genmoji (see the lead picture above) provides compared to the classic image. But since AI is so hot right now, seeing Apple Intelligence get applied to emoji was probably an inevitability. 🤷‍♂️

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