When Apple released its latest slew of new emojis earlier this week, food folks were excited to see lobster, mango, leafy greens, salt, moon cake, and cupcakes made the cut, as well as the all-important bagel.
"But wait," said almost everyone. "That bagel is naked!" Now, two weeks after the original release, Apple has agreed the bagel deserves a dressing, and the latest version not only has a generous (but I'll be honest, not generous enough) schmear of cream cheese, but also looks distinctly more like the kind of hand-rolled gem you'd find in New York City than what you'd find in a plastic bag in a grocery store in Arizona.
With more than 100 options of food emojis to make our texts more delicious, using the picture-representations of our food has become more than just a habit — it's a part of life. The way an emoji looks actually depends on the platform displaying it, so each emoji depends on the company displaying it. Last year, following public outcry, Google had to fix its burger emoji (because who puts the cheese under their burger patty?); earlier this year, Google also edited the salad to be vegan.
This time, it was an Apple-specific catastrophe with the poor bagel design. But in fact, the crimes against bagels happening in the world of emoji are far more widespread. Microsoft's looks more like a doughnut than a bagel; Samsung's not only doesn't have cream cheese, but also appears to have been toasted (?) as well; Twitter's is a brownish-red (perhaps it's pumpernickel?); and Google's comes in sandwich form. So, while Apple's bagel emoji may have taken the most heat, with the updated design, it actually takes the lead, looking the most like the platonic ideal of a bagel.
It joins a select group of emojis that have undergone design changes, including, most famously, the gun (to be less realistic — now it's like a squirt gun); the octopus (to be more realistic, then back to being cute again); and finally, our favorite, the peach, which was redesigned to fit better with its most common use (to appear more like a butt).