Everyone is familiar with emojis, those little graphics that allow people to express themselves through images. Now a company has created bitmojis which are customizable images that are a depiction of a person.
Bitmojis were created as a secondary social media app that people can use to create emoji-like cartoon versions of themselves. These can then be used on various social media accounts as a profile image or visual identifier. Creating a bitmoji is simple: a person creates an avatar of themselves, and then chooses various comics, GIFs, facial expressions and reactions that are associated with it. When communicating in a chat or email they can use bitmojis to to express themselves. Bitmojis have gradually become popular with people who want to use something more interesting and personal than emojis.
Bitmoji is now owned by Snapchat, but was originally developed by a company called Bitstrips, that was established in Toronto, Canada in 2007. Their initial goal was to create digital comic strips using personalized avatars. Once emojis became popular and became used regularly, Bitstrips realized the potential of bitmojis and created a separate app for them called Bitmoji in 2014 that specialized in these personalized emojis. In 2016 Snap Inc, Snapchat’s parent company, bought the company and incoporated Bitmoji as one of its division.
Although Snapchat owns the company, Bitmoji can be used freely on a number of platforms including Facebook, iMessage, Gboard and on work-oriented apps such as Slack. They can also be used in the Chrome browser as well as in Gmail. Snapchat is also developing some unique uses for Bitmoji such as using them as avatars in games.
Users do not need to use Snapchat to take advantage of Bitmoj: they are created in a separate app that can be downloaded for iOS or Android systems. Users that do use Bitmoji with Snapchat, however, also gain access to Friendmoji, which are personalized Bitmojis people can use and exchange with their close friends.
The process for creating a bitmoji should be familiar to most users. After downloading the app the user starts out by creating an avatar. Anyone who has created a personalized digital avatar in other platforms will find the process familiar: it involves choosing a skin shade, hair color, hair style, chin stype, jawline, nose, eyes, and so on. The app provides a huge range of options for personalization and users often spend a lot of time getting these right.