Microsoft Office is getting a new default font that could change everything

Aptos, Microsoft's new default font for Office in 2023
(Image credit: Microsoft)

Microsoft is finally updating the default font on its Office apps such as Word, Excel and Outlook after a decade and a half in a move that’s hoped to overhaul and uplift the office software experience.

Redmond’s designers announced in 2021 that the search was on for a new font that would eventually replace Calibri, which has been in use since 2007.

A now, the company has confirmed the new font, Aptos, will be taking over from where Calibri left off, but you might have to wait several months before you notice any changes.

Farewell Calibri, welcome Aptos

Of the five new fonts which were commissioned and subsequently added to the drop-down font picker - Bierstadt, Grandview, Seaford, Skeena, and Tenorite - it was decided that Bierstadt would be crowned the new default font.

Designer Steve Matteson later renamed the font Aptos after an unincorporated town in Santa Cruz, California. An area known for diverse landscapes like fog, beaches, redwood trees, and mountains, which Matteson says reflects Aptos’s versatility.

Aptos belongs to the sans serif family of fonts - a family known for simple letterforms, even strokes, and legibility - and is hoped to make Microsoft’s services more accessible. New themes, colors, and backgrounds are also set to arrive as the company looks to improve inclusivity, too.

Word, Outlook, PowerPoint, and Excel users are all set to get access to the new default font, but Microsoft says that this will be a gradual process that will take months. The design team is also keen to stress that, like Calibri, Times New Roman, and Arial, Aptos will not be mandatory and users will continue to be able to pick from tens of other fonts, including the runners up mentioned above.

Craig Hale

With several years’ experience freelancing in tech and automotive circles, Craig’s specific interests lie in technology that is designed to better our lives, including AI and ML, productivity aids, and smart fitness. He is also passionate about cars and the decarbonisation of personal transportation. As an avid bargain-hunter, you can be sure that any deal Craig finds is top value!