Google takes a web page from Apple’s Memoji: Android now lets customers create emojis that seem like them


Google has introduced some clever emoji to its keyboard app – and they’re meant to look just like you. 

The tech giant is using machine learning to create what it calls ‘Emoji Minis.’

They’re cartoonish stickers that appear in Gboard, Google’s keyboard app, and are modeled after users selfies, similar to Apple’s Memojis.  


Emoji Minis are customizable based on a range of characteristics and can even show off your beard, nose ring and favorite baseball cap.

Users can also add different hair colors, like green, blue or gray. 

They’re meant to give users more ways to represent themselves using emoji.

‘Emoji Minis are designed for those who may have stared into the eyes of emoji and not seen yourself staring back,’ Google wrote in a blog post. 

‘These sticker versions of the emoji you use every day are customizable so you can make them look just like you.’ 

Stickers come in a range of different styles, including the standard emoji style, ‘bold’ and ‘sweet,’ for when ‘you want a softer touch,’ Google said.

To do this, Google says it uses a combination of ‘machine learning and artistry.’

Users take a selfie and the camera uses machine learning to determine certain facial traits, like skin color, hair and accessories. 

‘After you take a selfie, emoji Minis use Google’s machine learning algorithms, known as neural networks, to suggest a skin tone, hair style and accessories that you can fine tune,’ Google explained.  

Then, users can further customize their look by adding things like freckles or glasses. 

‘Add freckles or wrinkles—a little or a lot—if you’d like,’ the firm said.

‘Design your Minis so they resemble what you look like in your eyes—or in your mind.’ 

Unlike other emoji keyboards, users aren’t restricted to one emoji showing off their hair color. 

They also get a range of expressions like redheaded zombies or redheaded shruggies, Google said. 

Emoji Minis are available worldwide in the Gboard app for Android and iOS. 

It comes as Google rivals Apple and Snapchat have both introduced personalized emojis. 

Apple’s personalized emojis, called Memojis, rolled out in iOS 12.

The feature takes advantage of the iPhone’s 3D augmented reality-infused camera to generate lifelike emojis.

Meanwhile, Snapchat began letting users create Bitmojis when it acquired Bitstrips in 2016. 

Like Memojis, users can create a cartoon version of themselves.   


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