Microsoft is presenting five candidates for its new default font, to replace Calibri.
One of them is Skeena, among the designers of which is our own John Hudson.
In my opinion, though, the only candidates that have a chance are Tenorite and maybe Seaford. Bierstadt is too bold, and Grandview is too DIN-like. As for Skeena? All the candidates are sans-serif. Seaford is apparently not quite a monoline face, but Skeena is very definitely not monoline; it's also in the semi-bold category. So, while it is a beautiful face, I doubt it can be a default.
These five typefaces are already available within Office 365.
True, but it's *MS* Office. And arguably the default font in Office gets way more mindshare than the OS typeface. Noting how people have come to love to hate Calibri, not Segoe (or whatever, I'm not even sure, which is telling here).
Yes, eventually it is likely that some of the new fonts will ship bundled with either or both Office and Windows (at the moment they are only available via the Office cloud font service), but Johannes was talking about Microsoft brand and ‘encapsulating what they feel their OS should be’—and the new Office fonts are really not that: they are document fonts for users, not branding fonts for Windows.
An interesting comparison here is IBM Plex, which is supposed to straddle branding and usage, but because IBM doesn't make dominant authoring software for end-users it cannot work, and simply ends up eroding the typographic branding potential (with very little benefit).
Perhaps Microsoft will choose to replace their serif default font for MS Office before too long. If they have any sense, they'll look at New York, the abomination that Apple paid actual money for, then turn around by 180 degrees, and look for a replacement in that direction.
Or maybe somebody at Microsoft will choose to drop by this forum, and stop for a second to think about all the imaginative, talented folks who come to showcase their work here.
The exercise is to set the direction for the next Office default type system. This is not a Microsoft brand or UI font, and although the typefaces need to live alongside UI fonts and branding fonts, Office is cross-platform and we obviously can't influence Apple and Android UI fonts.
We've not made any statements about shipping these with Windows - but we're keeping them cloud-only (aka.ms/officefonts) at least until we pick the direction and finalize the work.
Once we select the direction there will be lots of updates and changes, and additional styles will be commissioned so that it will shine in all our apps at all our end points. That's why we've given ourselves a year and a half to get that done.
So we're encouraging folks to let us know which they prefer but also things they don't like. Customer sentiment is just one of the inputs into the decision, but we are learning a lot, especially about things that people care about - dyslexia, accessibility, l and I differentiation, the names - so also opportunities for educational material when we announce the results.
Given the positive reaction I'm also hopeful that we'll be able to do work across all five families not just the one we pick. Re serif, I asked all of the designers to propose serif and monospaced companions, so hopefully a roadmap for that too.
There are many name places and mountains to choose from. Must is be a name that evokes a keg stand scene in Animal House 2: Beer Me, Bro!?
Disagree. Branding relies mostly on display typography.
When Calibri gets replaced, people will notice that way more than a UI font changing.
I remember seeing a chart that shows that, yes, there are variations in font availability on different platforms. But they should be available in Word on nearly all the platforms.