Cool Emoticons & Smileys in Gmail

Gmail is probably the coolest Email service in the world
Up until recently, Gmail had one major drawback – it was visually behind other Email services, that allowed the usage of a wide variety of graphic symbols, emoticons and smileys. Now all that has changes, and Gfans can use and enjoy a much richer writing experience, both in their mail correspondence and when using the gmail messenger features – the in-mail addition – gmail chat, and the external application, Gtalk. This is your complete guide for using emoticons in Google’s communication tools and services.
You probably already know how to compose a regular Gmail message (No need to be a brain surgeon to do that, right?), but how do you insert cool graphics to your messages? Elementary my dear Watson. Point your mouse to the little Emoji icon in the Gmail toolbelt (between the ‘Highlight Color’ button and the ‘Link’ button) and choose the one that you like. The basic selection is not too bad – 156 Emoticons in two screens, some of them circular (old fashioned smileys) and some are more rectangular. You can also use some non-face smileys such as a slice of cake, a flower, a camera, a lightbulb etc.
The emoticons are embedded in your Email message image files, so they can be read by any Email program or service, and will not be dependent on Gmail’s service.
Adding more graphic juice to your messages:
The basic selection isn’t enough for you? Didn’t think so, buddy. Time to put the paddle to the metal and power up your mail service. Go to Gmail’s settings (upper right corner of your screen), and there – under the section ‘Labs’ (which lists all of Gmail’s coolest and most experimental features) enable the feature called “Extra Emoji”. Save, and allow Gmail to reload.
By now you have increased your emoticon database by almost ten fold. Sorted in 13 categories you now have access to some of the coolest Japanese style emoticons on the planet – animals, monsters and just regular household items are at the tip of your fingers – just select and embed them right into your message.
Emoticons in Gtalk or Gmail chat
The basic selection here isn’t currently as extensive as the one you get for your emails, but this will probably be changed soon. Until then, hit the little smiley icon on the bottom right part of your chat window and select one of the 16X4 emoticons in the menu. Each emoticon here has 4 representations according to different standards of Japanese phone carriers (but don’t be bothered by Japanese standards, just choose the one that you like).
Quick access to emoticons + The secret collection
Want to quickly embed emoticons in your chat? Use our nifty shortcut guide. Here are the emoticons you can embed in Gtalk:

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