IKEA abandons Futura for Verdana

This baffling decision has been blazing trails on Twitter and elsewhere on the web over the last week.

Seriously, whoever made this final decision at IKEA should be sacked. I know this sounds reactionary and they obviously thought about it but it's just not logical. I am guessing it wasn't decided by a graphic designer or someone with know-how but rather by some executive who believes he or she is creative.

In an interview with Swedish design magazine CAP&DESIGN, IKEA CIO Ivana Hrdličková says the reason for the change is to be able to use the same font worldwide, including Asian countries. Also they want to be able to give the same visual impression both in print and the web.

This strikes me as odd, as print and screen are very different communication platforms. Futura works very well in IKEA print media, with a solid legacy and I'd wager any normal customer would not have noticed a negative difference between the two typefaces. IKEA'S brand is more than enough to unite web and print. Lastly, the argument that Futura doesn't have all the characters for Asian countries is absurd. They could easily create their own distinct typeface, let alone invest in the adjustments Futura needs.


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