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How to Add the Emoji Keyboard to the iPhone



The use of emoticons is on the rise as more users turn to texting and iMessaging to stay in touch. Emoticons started out as a simple :) to convey emotion, and evolved into more detailed pictures known as emoji.

iPhone users benefit the most from emoji as they have a keyboard that is entirely dedicated to it. With a few easy steps this keyboard can be enabled so that texting conversations between iPhones, iPads and iPods are a little more interesting.

Using the Emoji keyboard is a fun way to liven up a conversation or get a laugh out of a friend.

How to Enable the Emoji Keyboard

Tap Settings.


Tap General.


Scroll down and select Tap Keyboard.


Tap Keyboards.


Then Tap Add New Keyboard.

New Keyboard

Scroll Down and Select Emoji.


Once complete the keyboard screen should appear in the list of keyboards.

All KeyboardsIn addition to the keyboard that the user uses as their default language the emoji keyboard is also added to this list. It is important to note that this same process can be used to add a keyboard of another language to the iPhone. This may be convenient while traveling, or also if a user is fluent in several languages.

How to Use the iPhone Emoji Keyboard

Once the keyboard has been added the only step left is to switch from English to Emoji while in a conversation.

When the Messages application is open the keyboard will display like so.

Default layout

Notice how the space bar has decreased in size to make room for the International button on the bottom row. To switch to the Emoji keyboard Tap the International button that is highlighted above. 

Emoji love

This switches to the Emoji keyboard. This keyboard offers six categories of Emoji, and multiple screens in each category. Tap on an icon in the bottom row to change categories and swipe in the three rows of icons to see more Emoji.

Users can combine emoji to create small characters as shown below.

Emoji Advanced

An example of advanced Emoji use.

To switch back to the standard keyboard, tap on the international symbol again.

Emoji is a fun way to spice up conversation but it does have some limits. When sent between iPods, iPads and iPhones the emoji will always be displayed. But if an iPhone user sends these emoji to android, regular phones, or even some websites, like Facebook, they may not display at all.

Also check out How to connect Facebook with iOS 6 and How to get YouTube back in iOS 6.




  1. Vellimalai

    01/02/2013 at 6:22 am

    Very thanks for help step

  2. N

    01/09/2013 at 11:31 am

    thanks a lot!

  3. ann

    01/28/2013 at 10:27 pm


  4. Sissi

    02/06/2013 at 1:10 pm

    Very helpfull, thanks

  5. Carito

    02/14/2013 at 11:25 am

    Thank you!! Couldn’t figure it out for the life of me. Haha thought I had to get an app or something. Thanks again?

  6. Edprez

    02/18/2013 at 4:56 pm

    Thank you

  7. Bana

    02/20/2013 at 7:03 am

    Hey man yu the shit thanks

  8. henry

    02/25/2013 at 8:32 am


  9. Sharon Campbell

    02/25/2013 at 1:39 pm

    Hey you rock! So much fun Sharon. I am a Grandma techie! A little challenging at times!

  10. Brenda Harper

    02/27/2013 at 7:39 pm

    How can I make the emoji pictures bigger?

    • Tristan

      08/22/2013 at 2:52 pm

      Shit ur panties bitch

      • whyouwannknow?

        09/26/2013 at 7:38 pm

        Oh man, I shouldn’t have laughed at that as hard as I did.

  11. Hazel

    02/28/2013 at 12:09 pm

    My iphn doesn’t have that option… is there another way?

  12. Natalie

    03/01/2013 at 7:58 pm

    My daughter has an IPhone 4 and I have an LG Optimus. She loaded it, but when she sends me a message with an emoticon, it doesn’t show up. Is this function only compatible with IPhones?

    • Dr loogie

      08/22/2013 at 2:56 pm

      Well done ima kill you bitch 🔫🔪

  13. jyotsna

    03/04/2013 at 8:02 am

    Cant find Emoji on the page which opens once u tap on new keyboard

    • Susan

      07/16/2014 at 11:36 am

      slide the screen to the left for more Emoji

  14. Amna

    03/05/2013 at 12:03 am

    Wow that helped a lot !! Really didn’t know that… Thanks a dozen :)

  15. Jyotsna

    03/05/2013 at 2:28 am

    hey have no emoji in the new keyboard section.Does it have to be downloaded first? HOW?

  16. Sabrina

    03/05/2013 at 9:15 am

    Why works only some times?Appears on the screen but not on the sent message.

  17. Nicolas Paul Mamula

    03/05/2013 at 5:36 pm

    🙏 !!!

  18. Briana

    03/05/2013 at 6:10 pm

    hella Helpful thanks guy

  19. Shahira

    03/14/2013 at 8:13 am

    Thanks so much, that was SO easy to follow!

  20. Jaima aldrich

    03/18/2013 at 12:11 pm

    😗Thank you!! How do you get more than what’s standard?

  21. Patricia Oliver

    04/09/2013 at 3:39 pm

    Thank you for all your help

  22. Subodh

    05/09/2013 at 9:49 pm

    Thanks buddy was very helpful😄

  23. Mimi

    06/11/2013 at 7:03 am

    You the best!! Thanks

  24. Msj shah

    06/19/2013 at 11:54 pm

    Wow this is by fair the most helpful site so far! Thanks 😎😛👍👌

  25. Mackenzie

    07/12/2013 at 1:14 pm

    Thank you so much!!!👍👌👏

  26. Lulu

    07/14/2013 at 11:06 am

    Amazing thank you! Nice and easy.

  27. carni611

    08/17/2013 at 5:58 am

    Thank you so much

  28. jose

    08/30/2013 at 8:21 pm

    thank you for you hel

  29. nammmsafasfdageaer12

    09/08/2013 at 11:51 am


  30. Sheryl

    09/20/2013 at 4:19 am

    thank you I still cant see how to combine the emoji to make a figure person tho’

  31. lilith

    12/29/2013 at 3:39 pm

    Thank you this helped so much even for ipod

  32. Janet

    12/30/2013 at 9:47 pm

    Thank you

    • maddy Shitole

      04/09/2014 at 9:33 am


  33. jimmy

    04/16/2014 at 7:23 am

    awesome i love it

  34. Hibatullah

    04/26/2014 at 10:26 am

    Thank you so much! That is helping :)

  35. Adelina Donat

    06/10/2014 at 8:02 am

    Thank you very much! Easy to follow.

  36. Mrrh1998

    06/24/2014 at 3:16 pm

    Ty Ty Ty so mush very helpful

  37. Jennifer

    08/15/2014 at 11:45 am

    Like others have mentioned, I don’t have the emoji option as described here. Is there another way to do it?

  38. Stacey

    11/14/2014 at 5:40 am

    Hi! Thank you so much !! But if you also have the NEW Emoji how do you set those up?

    Thank you for your help!

  39. Jada blackmon

    02/28/2015 at 1:22 pm

    Omg this really helped I was like wow my iPhone doesn’t have emojis but now they do so thanks 😳😁😂

  40. Little Wickey

    12/03/2015 at 8:08 pm

    Very helpful! I greatly appreciate it

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