Emoji began in Japan, but have been increasingly becoming part of how we communicate on the web and in texts. You’re more likely to see them employed on Instagram and Facebook rather than by users on Twitter, where all characters are quite precious. You’re also not likely to see them dropped into Word documents and Excel spreadsheets, but if you so desire, they can be plopped just about anywhere. Whether they render or not is another story.
So, how do you access Emoji on a PC running Windows 8/8.1/10? It’s actually pretty straight forward. Right click on the taskbar and navigate to Toolbars > Touch keyboard and click on it, assuming it’s not already checked.
You will see a new icon on the taskbar, next to the system tray on the right side of the screen. When you are typing something, and would like to drop an Emoji into the mix without picking up your phone or tablet, just click that new keyboard icon and the touch keyboard will be invoked. You can find nearly all existing Emoji categorized nicely by clicking on the smiley face icon next to the spacebar. From there, you can explore the Emoji simply by clicking through the menus.
As you will see, Microsoft has made the appearance of the Emoji match the Modern design language used in Windows Phone 7/8/8.1 and Windows 8/8.1/10. Android and iOS each have a unique take on the emoji as well.
In the real world example in the screenshot below, you can see that I like to insert Emoji into my Facebook posts. You’ll also see that the OS is not rendering Emoji as I type it, but don’t fret about that, the unicode is there and capable devices and websites will display the emoji you used. Some Emoji show up fine on the PC, but most will not unless you’re on a touch screen. Call it a “feature” of Windows if you will.
Many websites, like WordPress and Facebook, will render the emojis after you post using their own appearance, allowing most PC users to see the Emoji you just used instead of blank squares.To dismiss the keyboard, just start typing with the physical keyboard, or click something with the mouse.
Lastly, yes, I really did manage to kill the cord on my headphones. 😭