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Google replaces gun emoji with water pistol

Google has decided to replace its gun emoji with a water pistol.

The US-based search engine - which is also responsible for the Android operation system - has announced that it is intending to replace the controversial emoji, bringing its images in line with those of Apple, Samsung and Twitter.

Apple - the world's largest tech firm - led the way with the change back in 2016, when it decided an update was needed in the wake of a series of high-profile shootings in America.

Facebook has already declared its intention to follow suit in time, but Microsoft has yet to issue a public statement about the emoji debate.

The Google update is widely expected to feature in Android 9.0, which is the next version of its mobile operating system.

Last month, meanwhile, Google announced its "mobile-first" indexing of the web will be rolled out.

The search engine has been developing the new indexing for a year a half after they announced in 2016 its plan to change the way its search index operates.

The tech giant detailed how its algorithms would eventually be shifted to use the mobile version of a website's content to index its pages.

Google also hopes its new development will help to understand its structured data and to show snippets from the site in the Google search results.

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