We’ve had some fun with the AR Emoji feature on Samsung’s Galaxy S9 this year, so we’re stoked to hear that TouchPal is bringing the feature to everyone in its Android keyboard.

AR Emoji is a feature that uses 3D characters inspired by emoji that follow your facial movements. Instead of sending regular emoji in a messenger conversation, you might send your friends a winking polar bear or a shocked banana. They’re usually sent as images in a conversation.

Samsung’s AR Emoji system also creates a set of animated GIFs for users, and TouchPal’s AR Emoji system allows you to create and send 10 second animations. Its a funny place for a technological arms race to occur, but there you go.

Usually these solutions are proprietary, and only work on one or two devices. TouchPal’s implementation, being a part of their keyboard – already used by millions of prime every day – allows any device with a front-facing camera to get in on the fun.

The feature originated last year on the iPhone X as Animoji, and made its way to Android on the Galaxy S9 earlier this year where Samsung has partnered with Disney to release AR Emoji of their iconic cartoon characters to the phone. TouchPal’s AR Emoji technology made its public debut on a recent Vivo handset, the V9, where it’s called FunMoji (but that’s Vivo’s name). The developer’s video above indicates it’ll soon be available for all Android handsets.

AR Emoji hasn’t made it into the TouchPal keyboard in the Play Store yet, but TouchPal tells us it should be out soon.

With multiple manufacturers and software houses now bringing AR Emoji to market and existing systems like Bitmoji finding their niche, it seems only a matter of time before one takes off and goes mainstream, or a big hitter like Google releases its own cross-device implementation.

Which keyboard do you use? Would you change for an AR Emoji feature? Tell us in the comments!

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    Before discovering the Nexus One, Jason thought he didn't need a smartphone. Now he can't bear to be without his Android phone. Jason hails from Sydney, Melbourne or Brisbane depending on his mood and how detailed a history you'd like. A web developer by day with an interest in consumer gadgets and electronics, he also enjoys reading comics and has a worryingly large collection of Transformers figures. He'd like to think he's a gamer, but his Wii has been in a box since he moved to Sydney, and his PlayStation Vita collection is quite lacking. Most mornings you'll find him tilting at various windmills on Twitter - follow @JM77 and say hi!