About a year ago, Apple said that it would add more diversity to its emoji set and mentioned that it was working with the Unicode Consortium on this matter. Fast-forward to today, and the results are in.
When you launch iOS 8.3 beta 2 (or Yosemite), you’ll see a “neutral” (in our case, a classic yellow) emoji. However, when you tap or click and hold it, you will get five alternate skin-tone options, as adopted by the Unicode Consortium based on the Fitzpatrick scale for standard dermatological representation.
Since we are talking about beta software now, it’s possible that the final set of emojis — colour, style, and character — will undergo a change.