This is probably the most in-depth analysis of worldwide emoji usage ever undertaken

The emoji has become one of the phenomenons of the technological age. What started out as the odd smiley face at the end of a text message :) has evolved into being dubbed the world's "first truly global language".

To begin analysing how the world uses this new 800-strong lexicon, SwiftKey - software developers for iOS and Android keyboards - crunched one billion pieces of data from users of 16 different languages (the traditional, spoken kind, that is) and broke it all down into 60 different categories.

The Swiftkey Emoji Report 2015, using what the Atlantic believes could be the “largest single database on emoji usage trends in existence”, found a number of interesting variations depending on the geography, climate and culture of the country in question.

Here's what we learned:

Happy faces (44.8 per cent) are the most widely used emoji

Sad faces account for only 14.3 per cent

Canadians love the poop emoji

Using it more than twice the global average

Americans love royal emoji

They use the crown, princess emoji etc more than twice as much as their British counterparts

They also use the aubergine (or "eggplant") emoji more than any other country, apparently

Aussies love booze

Using clinking beer glasses, cocktails and wine more than twice the global average

France lives up to its reputation as the most romantic nation on Earth

With the heart accounting for 55 per cent of all emojis sent by French speakers - the only language where a smiley face is not number one

Britons don't actually talk about the weather that much

Despite it being our go to topic of choice for real-life smalltalk, the use of weather emoji among Britons pales into comparison with our Russian counterparts, who have a particular fondness for the snowflake emoji – perhaps unsurprisingly given the country's climate

But we do like winking

Britons use this emoji more than twice the global average

Malaysians are most fluent in emoji

The 10 most popular emoji used by Malaysians only accounted for 37 per cent of the total used, compared to 57 per cent in Turkey – the least savvy emoji users in the study

Brazilians are the most zealous

Religious emoji - prayer hands, church, star in the night sky - are used by Brazilians more than twice as much as the global average

All emoji images via Emojipedia

More: Introducing the new set of racially diverse emoji

More: Why there is a petition to ban this emoji

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