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Excel UNICODE Function

Excel UNICODE function
Summary 

The Excel UNICODE function returns a number (code point) corresponding to a Unicode character. Unicode is computing standard for the unified encoding, representation, and handling of text in most of the world's writing systems. 

Purpose 
Get number from Unicode character
Return value 
Unicode code point in decimal notation
Syntax 
=UNICODE (text)
Arguments 
  • text - Unicode character to convert to number.
Version 
Usage notes 

The Excel UNICODE function returns a number (code point) corresponding to a Unicode character given as text. The result is a number in decimal notation. For example, the Euro symbol (€) is code point 8364 in decimal notation, so the following formula returns 8364:

=UNICODE("€") // returns 8364

With the Euro symbol in cell A1, the formula below has the same result:

=UNICODE(A1) // returns 8364

If text is more than one character, UNICODE returns the number of the first character:

=UNICODE("a") // returns 97
=UNICODE("apple") // returns 97

Note: the UNICHAR function performs the opposite conversion, returning the Unicode character at a given code point.

Unicode

Unicode is a computing standard for the unified encoding, representation, and handling of text in most of the world's writing systems. Like ASCII, Unicode is a character set. However, Unicode is a very large character set, because Unicode is a superset of other character sets. Whereas ASCII contains 128 characters, Unicode 11.0 (June 2018) contains 137,439 characters covering 146 modern and historic scripts.

Unicode can be implemented in different encodings, for example, UTF-8, UTF-16, etc. UTF-8 dominates the web. It is estimated that over 90% of websites use UTF-8. The first 128 Unicode code points are the ASCII characters. 

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