Apple removes Taiwan flag from keyboards on Hong Kong iPhones

After latest update, Taiwan flag can still be displayed but no longer appears among selectable flag icons

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Screenshot of flag emojis (Image from social media via Twitter user @thisboyuan)

Screenshot of flag emojis (Image from social media via Twitter user @thisboyuan)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – The Taiwan flag emoji has been removed from the keyboard input with iPhone's newest operating system update for phones set to the Hong Kong and Macao region.

The flag can still be displayed without issue but is absent from the list of selectable flag icons for iPhone users in Hong Kong and Macao. Hong Kong Free Press reports that the flag can be displayed by changing the phone’s regional setting, or by using English to input “Taiwan,” which will offer the flag as a text prediction option.

Hong Kong users began to notice the slight change after the iOS 13.1.1 update was rolled out in late September, reports HKFP. Last year, the Taiwan flag completely disappeared from iPhone keyboards in China.

Any iPhone user with the newest update that switches their phone's regional setting to China, Hong Kong or Macao, will be able to see the changes. So far Apple has offered no comment on the change.