smart Unicode Latin font family for literacy (more faces, limited charset)


Andika ("Write!" in Swahili) is a sans serif, Unicode-compliant font designed especially for literacy use, taking into account the needs of beginning readers. The focus is on clear, easy-to-perceive letterforms that will not be easily confused with one another.

A sans serif font is preferred by some literacy personnel for teaching people to read. Its forms are simpler and less cluttered than some serif fonts can be. For years, literacy workers have had to make do with fonts that were available but not really suitable for beginning readers and writers. In some cases, literacy specialists have had to tediously cobble together letters from a variety of fonts in order to get the all of characters they need for their particular language project, resulting in confusing and unattractive publications. Andika addresses those issues.

Andika New Basic is a limited-character-set (no extended IPA or Cyrillic) version of Andika that includes regular, bold, italic and bold-italic faces. Andika New Basic gives a preview of what a whole range of new weights will eventually look like.

A hallmark of Andika's versatility for global use is its selection of alternate letterforms. These alternates are accessible via OpenType and Graphite font features. For applications that do not support OpenType or Graphite, TypeTuner Web ( allows you to download a custom font with your choice of which forms should be the default. TypeTuner is also available as a standalone utility - (

Andika New Basic is a limited-character-set version of Andika that includes a full family of styles (Regular, Bold, Italic and Bold-Italic).

In particular, these fonts do not support:
  Full extended Latin IPA
  Complete support for Central European languages

What is the difference between Andika and Andika New Basic?
  Andika has a more complete character set comparable to
    Charis SIL and Doulos SIL
  Andika New Basic has a limited character set, supporting only the Basic
    Latin and Latin-1 Supplement Unicode ranges, plus a selection of the
    more commonly used extended Latin characters, with miscellaneous
    diacritical marks, symbols and punctuation.
  Andika New Basic has all four faces: Regular, Bold, Italic and Bold-Italic

What is the difference between Andika Basic (2008) and Andika New Basic?
  Andika New Basic has all four faces: Regular, Bold, Italic and Bold-Italic
  Andika New Basic has a few more characters than Andika Basic
  Andika New Basic uses different glyphs for "a" and "r" based characters
    than Andika Basic, and are identical to the main Andika font
  Graphite feature identifiers were integers in Andika Basic and are
    4-character alphanumeric tags in Andika New Basic

The full-character-set Andika is being updated to include all four faces (Regular, Bold, Italic and Bold-Italic).

Webfont versions and HTML/CSS examples are also available.

The full font sources are publicly available at An open workflow is used for building, testing and releasing.

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Install this software package

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Install fonts-sil-andikanewbasic