Emoticons: either you love them or you hate them. Personally, I’m closer to the ‘hate’ camp, but when it comes to expressing an emotion, why use ten words when a winking smiley face will do? Google clearly knows that many people love emoticons, as it’s now added a choice of well over 1,000 of the things to its new compose window in Gmail.

You’ll find them by hovering your mouse pointer over the ‘+’ symbol next to the attachment icon. If it’s enabled for you (one of my accounts has a ‘coming soon’ message, the other has them activated) you’ll be able to scroll through pages and pages of emoticons – everything from a traditional smiley face to the likes of an animated unpeeling banana, a ringing bell and a launching rocket.

Now, Gmail’s had emoticons for a long time but they’re new to the recently-redesigned compose window, and the choice has been massively expanded. We counted a total of 1,287 in the new menu versus just 158 in the old one, which may sound like overkill, but hey, choice is a good thing, right?

Screen Shot 2013 02 08 at 16.07.37 520x520 Love emoticons? Gmails got you covered. You can now add more than 1,000 of them to your emails

Of course, if you hate emoticons, watch out, your inbox might be about to get flooded with your ‘wacky’ friends’ ‘fun’ messages. Bah, humbug.

Screen Shot 2013 02 08 at 16.14.54 520x174 Love emoticons? Gmails got you covered. You can now add more than 1,000 of them to your emails

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