Monotype Imaging Holdings Inc., a leading global provider of text imaging solutions, has released the Georgia Pro and Verdana Pro typeface families, available from Fonts.com. Originally designed by Matthew Carter 15 years ago and adopted by every major computer operating system, Georgia and Verdana are now available as Pro families. Each comprises 20 weights and features advanced typographic capabilities and extended character sets.
Carter teamed up with Tom Rickner of Monotype Imaging, who provided technical support on the initial release of Georgia and Verdana in 1996 as fonts for Microsoft’s “Core fonts for the Web” pack. The duo collaborated on the new Pro versions with typeface designers David Berlow of Font Bureau, who led the design effort on Verdana Pro, and Steve Matteson of Monotype Imaging, who did the same for Georgia Pro.
“Georgia and Verdana represented major milestones in the 1990s because they worked so well on screen and were among the first Web-safe fonts,” said Allan Haley, director of words and letters at Monotype Imaging. “However, with four fonts each, Georgia and Verdana were limited in their use. The new Pro versions empower these highly legible, tried-and-true designs with newfound typographic versatility, thanks to the addition of several weights and OpenType® features. The new condensed fonts, for example, will be appealing for environments that mandate blocks of text to fit in tight spaces, such as mobile website displays and printed package labels.”
“The new Pro series of Georgia and Verdana are being released at a time that seems particularly auspicious,” said Carter. “The design of websites will certainly benefit, and I hope that designers who have long been familiar with Verdana and Georgia will take full advantage of the greater versatility of the Pro series, both on screen and in print.”
New weights for both families include a light, semibold and black, each with matching italics, in addition to new condensed families and complementary italics. All the fonts have been hand-tuned, or hinted, to ensure high legibility on screen, and each of the fonts has an extensive character set to support all Pan European languages, including Greek and Cyrillic. OpenType capabilities include the ability to insert typographic features such as small caps, ligatures and old style figures. The fonts also contain enhanced kerning pair suites.
“The enhancements to the families are significant — especially in this new age of Web fonts. With the explosion of devices that provide for on-screen reading experiences, these fonts are more relevant than ever,” said Matteson, Monotype Imaging’s creative type director. “The new weights and styles add to the Web developer’s palette for headlines, subheads, captions and pull quotes.”
“The expanded and enhanced Georgia and Verdana families will appeal to many who publish in print and online,” said Berlow. “This expansion adds breadth for creative professionals who rely on these two workhorse font families.”
Carter created the original Georgia and Verdana families with legibility in mind — legibility for on-screen applications using low-resolution monitors of the day. Each design shares characteristics conducive to easier reading, such as large x-heights, which refers to the height of lowercase letters, and generous open counters, which concerns the openness of characters such as ‘c’ and ‘d.’ In addition, Georgia and Verdana include ample letter spacing, the appearance of distinct transitions between the regular and bold weights, and the ability to clearly distinguish characters that often look similar, such as the numeral “1” and letter “l.”
The original Georgia and Verdana fonts differ in their default settings for numerals. While Verdana defaults to lining figures, which rest on the baseline and commonly share the same height as capital letters, Georgia defaults to old style figures, which have varying heights to better harmonize with lowercase characters. With the release of the latest fonts, the new Georgia Pro is now consistent with Verdana Pro, as both use lining figures as their default settings.
Customers may contact Monotype Imaging in the U.S. toll-free at 800-424-8973 or in Europe at 44-1737-765959 (U.K.). Linotype may be reached at 49-6172-484-418 (Germany). Customers from other parts of the world may dial 1-781-970-6020 (U.S.).