Windows 8 metro applications have a few things in common. One of them is typography. Segoe (pronounced “se-go” not “see-go” or anything else), specifically we’re talking about the Segoe UI font (or a derivative of it), is the standard san serif font in Windows 8 metro applications – and more.

Preview Segoe UI

What does Segoe UI look like? Take a look:


This is the Windows 7 version, the Windows 8 version has a different Q!

“Segoe is either a registered trademark or a trademark of Microsoft Corporation in the United States and/or other countries.” In all reality, Segoe UI has become “the Microsoft font”, and it’s beautiful.

Wikipedia: [Microsoft] uses Segoe in their online and printed marketing materials, including recent logos for a number of products. Additionally, the Segoe UI family of fonts is utilized by numerous Microsoft applications, and may be installed by applications (such as Microsoft Office 2007 and Windows Live Messenger 2009) or bundled with certain operating systems (including Windows Vista and Windows 7).

Bruce: Segoe UI is an approachable, open, and friendly typeface, and as a result has better readability than Tahoma, Microsoft Sans Serif, and Arial. It is smoother and more book-like than ITC Franklin Gothic. It has the characteristics of a humanist sans serif: the varying widths of its capitals (narrow E and S, for instance, compared with Helvetica, where the widths are more alike, fairly wide); the stress and letterforms of its lowercase; and its true italic (rather than an “oblique” or slanted roman, like many industrial–looking sans serifs). The typeface is meant to give the same visual effect on screen and in print while being highly readable on its own. It was designed to be a humanist sans serif with no strong character or distracting quirkiness.

Segoe UI is optimized for ClearType, which is on by default in Windows Vista. With ClearType enabled, Segoe UI is a very beautiful, readable font. Without ClearType, Segoe UI is only marginally acceptable. These factors determine when you should choose to use Segoe UI.

Segoe UI Symbol

But as cool as Segoe UI is, that’s not what I want to talk about. I want to talk about Segoe UI Symbol. You might wonder “do I have it installed? Navigate to c:\windows\fonts and check:


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