What happens when a country musician and a web-savvy college student, both from Texas, meet on the Internet? Beautiful, Texas-themed emoji magic, baby.
Rich O’Toole, a country artist from Houston, teamed up with Sean Compton, the creator of Sorry, I’m Texan, to fill a void they both felt in the current emoji stackup. O’Toole was tipped off that some crucial communication tools were missing from his digital alphabet when he noticed the common emoji keyboard has no taco icon.
“I just can’t believe there aren’t emoticons based on Texas,” O’Toole said in a recent phone interview with KENS5 San Antonio. “Texas is like, it’s own country. We have our own everything.”
Everything but some recognition in the emoji library. That’s where O’Toole and Compton saw their chance for innovation. The unlikely pair took their idea to Rocksauce Studios, an Austin-based company that builds apps, for help with designing a few hundred, Texas-themed emoji, or Texmoji. Unlike the emoji keyboard that comes standard with iPhones, Texmoji will have to be purchased separately (at $0.99 to 1.99 per download), but can you really put a price on Texas pride?
The emoji will be grouped into categories like Objects & Symbols, Food & Drink, Music, and Travel & Places. Not all of the emoji have been revealed yet, and O’Toole and Compton say we can expect updates with more emoji roll-outs throughout 2015. But some of the emoji we can count on already include a Willie Nelson braid wig, a breakfast taco, a stack of bacon, a Whataburger calling number, a Speed Limit 85 roadsign, and, of course, a miniature but detailed depiction of the Alamo.
It’s unclear whether or not people who download the Texmoji app will be able to share their spirited new emoji with people who haven’t also downloaded the app, but at the very least, Texmoji users will be able to communicate via Willie Nelson-themed emoji with one another. (It’s also unclear what kind of message might be better communicated with the help of such an icon, but surely there’s a need out there somewhere.)
What kind of Texas emoji are you hoping come with the app? We’ve got a few free suggestions:
- Rick Perry’s hair (or new, stylish glasses)
- Texas Instruments graphing calculator
- Crying Sooner kid
- Tim Riggins
- Various cuts of beef
- Deep-fried beer (or deep-fried anything)
- Big Tex
- Buc-ee’s bumper sticker
- Wendy Davis’ sneakers
- George W.’s paintings
- High school football stadium
- Cadillac Ranch
- The “Hi, how are you?” frog
- An entire page of Texas flags, followed by a page of U.S. flags
- Ted Cruz, standing in front of a butter sculpture
Photo courtesy of ThinkStock.