Adobe open source typeface supports Asian alphabets

Adobe (NASDAQ: ADBE) said it has released Source Han Sans, an open source typeface supporting Japanese, Chinese and Korean, as well as Latin, Greek and Cyrillic alphabets.

It was developed in collaboration with Adobe´s key partner Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) and contracted foundry partners across East Asia. Source Han Sans marks a record-breaking typeface in terms of size, scale, complexity and support for Japanese, Chinese and Korean all within the same font family. It provides designers and developers creating content for international audiences one uniform font to use in print and web files no matter the language, eliminating the need to license multiple fonts.

While the Japanese kanji, Chinese hanzi and Korean hanja characters share historical derivation, the typefaces have typically been individually created to support each language, with separate sets for traditional and simplified Chinese. Source Han Sans marks the first open source font family to support each of the languages, as well as regional variants, within the same font family.

Source Han Sans is available in seven weights in full fonts, as well as region-specific subsets, equaling a total of 42 typefaces, designed for screen devices and print.

In order to account for all regional variations, Adobe, in collaboration with Google and foundry partners Changzhou SinoType, Iwata Corp., and Sandoll Communication, designed 65,535 glyphs for each font, the maximum number for the OpenType format. The development and design took more than three years, with a team of more than 100 people, motivated by a common goal to help unify the international design and development communities.

Google said it is releasing this font under the name Noto Sans CJK as part of their Noto pan-Unicode font family.

Source Han Sans is available for immediate desktop use via Adobe Typekit and also via the Typekit service included with Adobe Creative Cloud. Users can also download Source Han Sans for free through SourceForge or GitHub.

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