Native emoji support in iOS 6 could spell the end of emoji apps

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One update to iOS 6 designed to put a smiley face on users may leave some app developers wanting to use a grimace icon. According to MacRumors, the change in iOS 6 to offer expanded emoji character support has led to several emoji app removals from the App Store.

Emojis, the popular picture characters for text messaging which first emerged in Japan, have been available in some capacity on iPhones for a number of years. A 2008 Wall Street Journal article noted that the lack of emoji support in early iOS versions held back iPhone adoption in Japan. Apple has broadened access to emojis since iOS version 2.2, and the current level of support is such that the company no longer considers many emoji apps necessary.

Notices sent to a number of developers claim that emoji apps are no longer in compliance with App Store guidelines because they offer no added functionality, MacRumors reported. The site also noted that some developers are questioning the removal of their apps, saying Apple is targeting any app listing emoji in its features.

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