PC Magazine Technology How-To

How to Create and Send Animoji on iPhone X

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Here’s how to text an animated character with a recording of your voice and facial expressions.

Admit it. You’ve always wanted to create an animated character that speaks in your voice and adopts your facial expressions. Well, now you can, at least if you have an iPhone X.

Among the many cool new features offered by the newest iPhone is an addictive twist on the emoji, dubbed Animoji. Apple iPhone X owners can insert any number of animated characters in a text message, thanks to the way the X maps your face. But there’s more. You can say anything you want to convey in the text, and the character speaks in your voice. It even records your facial expressions at the same time, so the character takes on your mannerisms.

Though you can send an Animoji only from the iPhone X, anyone can receive them on an iOS device, a different type of smartphone, or a Mac. Let’s check out how to create and send an Animoji.

  • 1Launch Messages App

    On your iPhone X, launch the Messages app. Start a new message to someone or respond to an existing text and tap in the iMessage field. Tap on the App Store icon (the one with the A) and then tap on the Monkey icon. Select “Tap on to Start.”
  • 2Find an Animoji

    View the collection of Animoji by swiping down on the left side. Stop when you find an Animoji you want to send. Look at your iPhone until the message that says “Bring your face into view” goes away. You can now play around with your face, so to speak. Make different expressions and movements with your eyes, eyebrows, mouth, and overall face to see how the Animoji mimics you. Tap on the Up arrow to see your Animoji and the other Animoji full screen. Tap on the Down arrow to exit full-screen mode.
  • 3Record Speech and Facial Expressions

    To record your speech and your facial expressions through the Animoji, tap on the red Record button. Speak your text. You can talk for up to 10 seconds before you’re cut off, so watch the seconds count down on the timer. To stop recording, tap the red Stop button. Your recording via the Animoji plays back so you can preview it before you send it. Preview it again by tapping on the Repeat button or delete it by tapping on the Trash Can icon. You can also tap on a different Animoji to see it speak the same recording. If you’re happy with the recording and the Animoji, tap on the Blue arrow to send it.
  • 4Bring an Animoji to Life

    On the other end, your recipient receives the text with the Animoji but with the sound turned off. That person has to tap on the Volume icon to hear your recording. Tapping on the Animoji launches it full screen. The person can pause and replay the Animoji by tapping on the Pause or Play icon at the bottom of the screen.
  • 5Send a Static Animoji

    You can also send a static Animoji with any facial expression. Select an Animoji, look into your iPhone to place your face inside the frame. Make a face. Hold down the Animoji and drag it into a message to send it.
  • 6Save an Animoji

    You can save an Animoji that you send or receive. Hold down the Animoji and swipe up on the screen. (On an iPhone 6 or earlier, an iPad, or an iPod touch, the recipient holds down the Animoji to bring up the menu.) Tap on Save, and the Animoji is saved to your device’s Camera Roll. To reuse it in a new text, tap on the Camera icon, and tap on the video clip of the Animoji (or select Photos as the source and then look for and tap on the clip).
  • 7Copy the Animoji

    From this menu, you can also copy the Animoji to use it in another message or forward it to someone else. Return to your text and tap on the Animoji to view it full screen. Tap on the iOS Share icon to share it via email, Facebook, Google +, or other apps and services.
  • 8All 12 iPhone X Animoji

    PCMag’s Sascha Segan provides a quick overview of which Animoji are available, and how they appear when received.

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