The move is one of a number of emoji updates due this fall which include the addition of women in stereotypically male professions such as construction work or coding, CNN reports.
Earlier this year, a proposal for an Olympics-inspired rifle emoji was opposed by Apple and Microsoft.
A number of legal issues have arisen from the use of the hand gun emoji. In February, the Washington Post reported that a 12-year-old girl in Fairfax, Va. was charged with threatening her school and computer harassment because she posted a message on Instagram that included a bomb, knife and gun emojis and the phrase “meet me in the Library”.
In a separate New York case last year, a teen was charged with making a terrorist threat after he wrote a Facebook post that included three gun emojis pointing at the head of a police officer emoji. The teen ultimately was not indicted on the charge.