How to change your OS X font to San Francisco font

20th May, 2015 - 3 minutes read

There’s been a lot of speculation that Apple will update their OS X system font after only a year of it moving to Helvetica Neue. Although it’s a very clean font, the introduction of Helvetica Neue as the system font on OS X and iOS was given a rough ride by most people, mainly due to the way it renders at different sizings.

The font they’re rumoured to be replacing it with? The same font they used for the Apple Watch, their in-house developed San Francisco font.

sanfrancisco_font

“This isn’t the first time that San Francisco, which Apple designed with a focus on legibility, has moved beyond the Apple Watch. It’s also used on the latest MacBook’s keyboard. San Francisco is meant to “maintain clarity and legibility” regardless of the size it’s scaled to. The visual overhaul of OS X that debuted with Yosemite has generally been well received, but Apple has been criticized for putting looks over usability with the move to Helvetica Neue. It’s a great typeface, but it can also be an eye strain if you’re not using one of the company’s sharp Retina displays.”The Verge

Now, if you’re like me and like to keep up with Apple, there’s a way – a really easy way – that you can update your OS X Yosemite system font (i.e. the system font on Mac, MacBook etc.) to the San Francisco font in just a couple of steps.

Originally posted by supermarin on GitHub, the solution is as follows:

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1. Download the San Francisco font files by clicking here and unzipping them

2. Copy the 5 font files to /Library/Fonts on your Mac. (TOP TIP: To find the file, open Finder and press cmd+shift+G)

3. Log out and log back in to apply the changes

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That’s it…done.

Want go back to Helvetica Neue? Follow these steps:

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1. Navigate to /Library/Fonts on your Mac and delete the 5 files starting with System San Francisco Display

2. Log out and log back in to apply the changes.

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DISCLAIMER: Miromedia assumes no copyright over these fonts, nor any liability for improper installation or improper use. Use of these fonts should conform to Apple’s express copyright and rules.

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