Since its release in 2004 by Lineto, Akkurat has went from a semi-obscure gem to quite the respectable face. It’s a close relative to the more well-known DIN, but a little more humanist and at $199 for each style’s per-seat license, Akkurat is six times more expensive. It has been adopted by many aesthetically dope brands and institutions, including my personal favorites, Études Studio and Light Work.
Recently, Akkurat has been noticed by a much larger, more mainstream “cool” brand — Apple. However, unlike the other brands who adopted the font, Apple went Arial by creating their own, near-exact replica of the face. The Apple Watch, their new smartwatch that will be available starting April 24, 2015, sports various new design features including new typeface for their interface — San Francisco.
There has already been much discussion already on whether or not Apple is guilty of dirty plagiarism. However, since typefaces are one of the five items not covered by copyright law (and San Francisco is different and well-made in it’s own right), the tech giant will almost certainly continue using their typeface for several years at least. The uncertainty lies in the future for Akkurat. Will the small, once unique typeface become a Helvetica to San Francisco’s Arial? Or will a once great face be watered down into the ever-growing ocean of forgotten type…
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