Announcing East Asian web font support and new font browsing tools for Japanese customers
After many years — working across four teams, on three continents, and in five time zones — we are proud to announce that we’ve extended Typekit’s web font service to support Chinese, Japanese and Korean fonts.
Our entire library of Adobe-owned East Asian type is now available for use in your websites, and also ready for you to use via desktop sync. We have expanded our collection of Japanese typefaces with the Heisei, Kazuraki, and Ryo families from Adobe, and we have built new font browsing tools at typekit.com specifically tailored for our Japanese customers.
East Asian fonts are big. Really, REALLY big. Last year we announced the introduction of Source Han Sans, with glyph counts ranging from just under 18,000 for Japanese and nearly 31,000 for Simplified Chinese. Not only do they have a lot of glyphs, they have a lot of megabytes to go with them – from 4.2 to 8.8MB per font! How are you going to use those on your site?!
“Sure, neat”, I hear you say, “but what if my content includes a news feed or a comments section? Do I have to get a whole new subset if my content changes dynamically?” Nope. With a dynamic kit, we’ll look for any change to the DOM and then request that only the new characters be added to the local copy. We call this dynamic augmentation, and it’ll happen automatically for any of the font families in your kit that use the dynamic subsetting option.
Instead of redownloading an entirely new font, we can now simply request the additional glyphs, and perform the update right in your browser. Need one glyph? We can do that! And when you need another, no need to download the first again. Dynamic augmentation makes dynamic pages with custom web fonts a reality for our customers in East Asia.
For more details on how to use these new capabilities, see our updated help articles on Adding fonts to your website and Language support & subsetting. For more details on browser support, see our updated Browser and OS support page.
New browse and search
In the Japanese typeface world, Serif and Sans Serif have no meaningful place. In their stead come Mincho, Gothic, Brush, and other categories. We have created an entirely new UI for search and discovery of Japanese typefaces with the introduction of our Browse Mode switch. This lets you filter by our traditional Default filtering options or by Japanese. When you pick the Japanese option, you’ll be able to sort and categorize by the new options, showing just the Japanese font families. When in the Default mode, you’ll see your old favorites and all the other non-Japanese fonts too.
We’ve shown localized text for our non-Latin fonts for a while now, but as part of this release, we are now showing the native font names for those which target Japanese. Don’t worry, if you are in the English locale, you’ll still see the English name — but for our Japanese customers, you’ll see the proper Japanese name. Additionally, we are now supporting multilingual search, so if you need to search for Kozuka Gothic , you can enter 小塚, こづか, コヅカ or even just ごしっく or ゴシック, and find what you need. This isn’t just for our Japanese customers – Chinese and Korean are now supported in our search fields as well.
These changes are live today with the new 2015 release of Creative Cloud. If you’re new to Typekit, it’s included with paid Creative Cloud subscriptions, or you can check out our standalone plans for great fonts everywhere you need them.
It’s taken a lot of work to get this ready, but what we are most excited about is not what we have done, but what you will do with it. We look forward to seeing great web typography and design come to East Asia. We’ve commissioned an example Japanese site to demonstrate our new East Asian web font support. Let us know what you think of it in the comments, and share your own sites with us there, too!
Finally, it wouldn’t be right if we didn’t give a big “Thank you! 감사합니다! 谢谢! 謝謝!” to all our beta testers. You helped us make this a great release.