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About the Unicode® Standard

Characters for the World

The Unicode Standard is a character coding system designed to support the worldwide interchange, processing, and display of the written texts of the diverse languages and technical disciplines of the modern world. In addition, it supports classical and historical texts of many written languages.

Formally, a version of the Unicode Standard is defined by an edition of the core specification, The Unicode Standard, together with the Code Charts, Unicode Standard Annexes and the Unicode Character Database. The detailed breakdown of the contents of each version are given on Archive of Unicode Versions. See also a summary of version information in About Versions.

Unicode 9.0.0

The latest version of the Unicode Standard is Version 9.0.0. The documentation for Unicode 9.0.0 is located in:


Beta Review

Periodically, drafts of new versions of the Unicode Standard, including the Unicode Character Database and UAXes, are available for beta review and public feedback. Consult the beta testing page to see if a beta version of the Unicode Standard is available.


The Unicode Standard is maintained by the Unicode Technical Committee. For up-to-the minute information, please see Updates and Errata. The lists of Proposed New Characters, and Proposed New Scripts give the latest information available on pending future extensions to the character repertoire of the Unicode Standard.

More Information

Where is my Character? offers suggestions on how to find a character encoded in the Unicode Standard. There is also a Unicode Glossary and a list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ). The Guide to Unicode Tutorials provides a summary of useful overviews and tutorials about the Unicode Standard. That is a good place to start for general information about how the standard works. There is also a short Technical Introduction. A number of Technical Reports provide additional specifications.