It’s the end of an era. Adobe will stop supporting PostScript Type 1 fonts in January 2023. When the clock turns over, your Type 1 fonts will no longer appear in the font menus, and existing Type 1 fonts in your documents will appear as “missing fonts.”
While this might sound like the plot line from a designer’s horror movie, it was time. The desktop publishing world has changed since Type 1 fonts were introduced in 1984. Adobe has been moving away from them since the 1990s and concentrating on the more versatile OpenType fonts. Most browsers and mobile OSes no longer support Type 1 fonts, making cross-channel publishing challenging. It was time for Type 1 fonts to go.
Even if you rely heavily on Type 1 fonts, don’t panic. There is still plenty of time to get ready. Here are five steps to ensure that the transition will go smoothly.
- Take inventory of the fonts you have.
Which Type 1 fonts do you have in your library? Which do you use? While “ending support for PostScript Type 1 fonts” might sound terrifying, you may find that, in practice, you are only using a fraction of the fonts available.
- Determine which files use PostScript Type 1 fonts.
Create an inventory of the files for which fonts need to be replaced. Divide up the task of converting them into bite-sized chunks. How many will you need to convert each day (or week)? This will make the job more manageable.
- Ensure that you have backups of your files.
When transitioning to new fonts, things can go wonky. Make sure you have the original files to go back to if needed.
- Gradually start the transition.
Divide your documents into bite-sized chunks and get started. If you are a Creative Cloud subscriber, Adobe is making this easier. Many fonts published by Adobe Type are free from the Adobe Fonts service with a Creative Cloud subscription. According to Adobe, perpetual licenses for these and other OpenType format fonts published by Adobe are available for purchase from its partner, Fontspring.
- Be wary of font conversion tools.
There are third-party font conversion tools available for Type 1 fonts not owned by Adobe, but be careful. Contact the font foundry to learn whether an upgrade path to OpenType is permissible under the font foundry’s End User License Agreement.
Transitions are rarely fun, but change brings opportunity, too. Enjoy the creative process as you investigate new fonts and see what they can do. You never know. Your new favorite font might be right around the corner!