If you like sending text messages (SMS) on Windows Phone, you'll love the new emoticon system that Microsoft has put in place. Previously, Windows Phone allowed you to easily send some basic smileys and if you wanted some more advanced symbols, you had to dig out some codes or use a 3rd party app.
This time around, Microsoft put in a selector at the bottom with visible choices for each symbol. You even have categories like faces, food, symbols and more. If you use the same symbols repeatedly, they will show up in a frequently used area for quick access the next time you message.
We should also point out that they work in all apps. We used them in Kik messenger with no issues (they just don't have color). All in all, it's these small changes that make Windows Phone 8 quite an improvement.