Embed Any Font on a Website with Fonts.com Web Fonts

The web typography party got a little bit bigger when Fonts.com released their free and commercial service for embedding non-standard fonts on websites.

Beaten to the punch by Typekit and Google which started offering the same kind of service since September 2009, respectively May 2010, Fonts.com's Web Fonts has a lot of catching up to do in the following months.

After spending 4 months in beta testing, the service launched with three subscription plans, 1 free and two commercial, and stands a good chances of dethroning its competitors, since it blows them out of the water when it comes to the number of available fonts.

Being one of the first ever font directories on the web, Fonts.com offers a collection of over 7,500 fonts, compared to the few hundreds in Typekit and the 19 (currently) in the Google Fonts Directory.

Fonts can be embedded in web pages using 4 methods (2 with JavaScript, 2 with CSS), but the free subscription plan grants access only to the two JavaScript publishing methods.

This might be a problem with JS heavy websites, since there's a large chance of triggering one or more conflicts in the source code.

The service also allows developers to use their own font if the font directory doesn't have it already.

Other noticeable and interesting features: SSL support, wildcard domain name support for dynamic websites (*.domain.com) and iPhone, iPad, iPod support.

Cross-browser availability is a key in web development, so Web Fonts is supporting all major browsers Microsoft Internet Explorer (version 4 and higher), Firefox (version 3.5 and higher), Google Chrome (version 4 and higher), Apple Safari (version 3.1 and higher) and Opera (version 10.10 and higher).

At this moment, the service supports technologies like @font-face, WOFF (W3C's standard open web font format) and SVG renderings of fonts (similar to Cufon).

Non-Latin fonts are also provided, with a Fonts.com proprietary solution for delivering font files with only the used characters.

Good thing for Chinese developers which normally would have to deliver font files with a staggering number of 28,000 characters or more.

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