You can Inform, enchant, allure, persuade, pitch, convince, express, canvass, campaign, solicit and do more with communicative icons.
Well, as the saying goes, ‘Actions Speak Louder Than Words’, and it holds true even today. Images on the mobile have become business as usual for most of us. These icons are an intrinsic part of our keyboard and find utility in expressing the simplest to the most innermost of our feelings.
A fun fact suggests that close to 57% of popular messenger users prefer to convey their true feelings of love to a crush by using the emoticon – Well, this is what we call as falling short of words!
Also known as emojis, these icons are fast emerging as the new social currency among users who are glued to their favourite messenger apps. Today, such icons have transcended their emotive utility and are finding a new space in terms of cultural symbolism and identity.
The stamp of approval for the new found craze among mobile users using these images is reflected in the Merriam-Webster officially adding the emoji to its dictionary.
Definition: any of various small images, symbols, or icons used in text fields in electronic communication (as in text messages, e-mail, and social media) to express the emotional attitude of the writer, convey information succinctly, communicate a message playfully without using words, etc.
A new trend in this regard that’s on an upswing is in the launch of new icons for people groups/ communities, ethnicity, places, apps and even for brands/ apps, etc. With many new icons getting released to fulfill these demands, they sometimes tend to become a matter of pride for many users who identify with them.
Recently, a 15-year-old Arab teenage girl came into limelight for making an appeal to the Unicode consortium, a body that is responsible for creating and approving these icons, to come up with a hijab emoji. Speaking about brands and popular personalities, some of the emojis that have made waves in the past include Kim Kardashian and His Holiness, the Pope and Pepsi.
However, even though such images display a greater emotional hold over audiences, the larger potential is yet to be realized. While leading our virtual lives – conversing, discussing, seeking opinions or giving them, so very often do we come across scenarios that are craving to find a voice.
Presenting a hawk eye’s view on the future of iconography:
- Icons will be more intention, motive and purpose driven.
- They will no longer be relegated to mood reflecting imagery.
- We will witness the launch of many new icons that are reflective of our daily life needs, desires and ideas.
- Icons that relate to our problems and take us to solutions.
For instance – Late to reach an important date – Urgent need to hire a cab.
Found job in a new part of town – Need to take up a new house on rent.
Buying monthly groceries on the fly – Want to order for breakfast cereals.
- Icons that depict an impending situation that requires our attention.
For instance – an urgent need to service the car or an impending need to make repairs at home.
- Icons that satisfy our impulse. For instance – Need to buy a new dress to go out on a date, gift a new watch to someone dear, and millions of other similar impulses.
Mobile users will gradually start demanding more innovations in iconography that will be predictive of their next move.
Let’s look at the reasons that justify the birth of such new icons:
- Our compulsive need to check the phone frequently quite simply to stay notified with the help of these icons.
- The way we user our phones to play around the app universe to get more options to choose from and satisfy our needs.
- Our constant need to express an intent through a text input on the keyboard for more information.
- Our unending conversations that ultimately lead us to planning or discussing future ideas also occupy our time spent on the mobile.
Currently, icons are more persona intensive and used for fun, frivolity and sometimes to convey deeper meaning in messages for clearing misunderstandings. It doesn’t really have any impact on most of the decisions that we take, a sizeable portion of which is impulse driven.
By making a difference in this regard, the next best thing to happen in the realm of expressive, intuitive and contextual imagery is the launch of Intenticons from Xploree. The thinking keyboard with its predictive technology brings us face to face with icons that reflect synonymity with our desires, motives and real life scenarios. Undoubtedly, these developments herald the rise of icons that will eventually take us beyond mobile apps for discoveries. Read more