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Detect fonts: Tools for identifying fonts

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How can a font be recognized? What font tools, websites, apps and other font recognition options are there? Here are tools to help identify fonts.

Table of Contents:

Looking for the right handwriting recognition online

The following situation is certainly familiar to creative people: On websites, logos and corporate design projects you discover fonts that you like very much. But how do you finally find out which fonts are involved? Fortunately, there are quite a few on this Tools, apps and other optionsthat help identify fonts.

The Font tools for handwriting recognition work with different approaches. For some, an image must first be uploaded. The corresponding tool then uses this to determine the corresponding characters that are required for font recognition online.

Other services, however, rely on the Assessment of the user. Basically, it is about the presentation of different letter variants, among which it is important to choose the most suitable. Step by step, the fonts in question are narrowed down until the name of one or more fonts has been determined that matches the selected criteria.

Unless it is a Web font there is the possibility of the Determine the name of the font directly via the browser allow. There are also a number of Extensions and so-called bookmarkletsspecially created to recognize fonts.

Identify fonts online by uploading images

The font identification websites WhatTheFont, Whafontis.com, FontSpring Matcherator and LikeFont offer the possibility of having a font recognized online via image upload. After uploading, the corresponding characters in the image are analyzed.

In order to achieve an optimal result with the character recognition online, here are some tips for uploading the image or scan:

  • Set the contrast between letters and background as high as possible
  • If possible, use black text on a white background (discolor image)
  • Simply position a font on the screenshot for analysis
  • Arrange letters horizontally for recognition (no slanted letters)
  • Do not use connected or closely spaced letters for analysis

Depending on Quality of the picture and the recognizable letters, the results may vary. The list of recognized fonts may therefore contain more or less precise results, which is finally shown by this small test:

Test result

In this attempt, Beba's Neue was set in "Bold" and with gray font on a light gray background in Photoshop. Since the font has similarities with a large number of other fonts, one could look forward to the result of the character recognition.

WhatTheFont immediately recognized the correct font and placed it at the top of the list of results. Whafontis.com provided a variety of similar fonts, but the correct font family was only listed in position 3. The FontSpring Matcherator did not recognize the correct font. Instead, fonts were listed, which, however, come very close to the template. With the results from LikeFont it was difficult to find any matches and consequently similar-looking fonts.

This test is certainly not representative of them Font identification websites. However, it shows that the services can deliver different results and that your own judgment can certainly not hurt.

Character recognition using multiple choice methods

Ultimately, the also revolves around the correct assessment of the user Character recognition using multiple choice methods. Here, certain characteristics of characters are queried, which are determined by selection process. Websites that offer this type of font identification are, for example, Identifont and Bowfin Printworks SerifGuide.

However, with this method very precise information about the characteristics of a font is absolutely necessary. Small deviations can already ensure that the result is falsified. It can still be worth a try.

IdentifontBowfin Printworks SerifGuide

Detect fonts via the app

MyFonts also offers WhatTheFont as a free app. This allows you to take pictures with a smartphone (or tablet) and then identify the fonts displayed. The range of functions and the result of the handwriting recognition is similar to the desktop version.

The font recognition app can be downloaded free of charge for iOS and Android:

WhatTheFont for iOSWhatTheFont for Android

Another app for identifying fonts is Find my Fonts. In addition to a photo, you can also select and analyze an image from your own library for character recognition. The result is quite appealing. The writing on the test image was recognized correctly. The app also shows the percentage probability that the fonts in the list correspond to the font in the picture.

The app is free up to a point. When the virtual "InApp-Credits" are used up, it is time to reload them for a fee.

Find my Font for iOS

“Find my Fonts” is also available as a desktop application for Windows. The free trial version can be used for 30 days.

Detect fonts on websites

First of all: Fonts on websites can often also be used without additional browser extensions or bookmarklets find out - provided that it is web fonts (and not images). All that is required is to use the integrated in the browser Developer tools take a closer look at the source code.

That's how it works:

  • Right click on the element whose font you want to find out
  • Click on "Examine" (with Google Chrome) or "Examine element" (with Firefox and Internet Explorer)
  • The name of the font you are looking for can then be found under the entry "font-family" or "Fonts"

Those who prefer to use browser extensions can, for example, use these extensions:

Type Sample

Type Sample is a bookmarklet or extension that can be used to find out the fonts on a website. After the installation you simply select "Type Sample" and click on the desired area of ​​the page. The name of the font then appears in a screen pop with a font sample.

for download


Web fonts can also be identified with Fount. After clicking on the button, fonts can be identified by marking them with the mouse pointer. The bookmarklet can also be used with Safari, Chrome, Firefox and IE8 +.

for download


If you want to quickly find out the name of fonts on websites, you can use WhatFont. After activation, all you need to do is move the mouse pointer over it to identify the corresponding font. The result is output as a tooltip.

for download

Fonts Ninja Extension

Fonts Ninja is an extension that is available for the Chrome browser, among other things. After installation, convenient information about the fonts used can be read from websites.

for download

Fonts Finder browser extension

The Fonts Finder browser extension provides detailed information. This extension, which is also available for Chrome, offers a range of additional information in the form of a screen pop.

for download

Fonts scanner

Fonts Scanner, as the name suggests, also searches websites for the fonts used. The scan result appears directly in the browser and can be assigned accordingly.

for download

Font Inspect

The Font Inspect browser extension analyzes websites for the fonts used. In addition to the names of the fonts, the tool also outputs other information such as color, font size, line height, etc.

for download

Find out used fonts in a PDF document

What font is used in PDF documents? This can be determined relatively easily, provided that the corresponding fonts are actually included in the PDF document. In order to recognize the fonts, “Adobe Reader” or “Acrobat” from Adobe is all that is required.

To identify the fonts in a PDF document, proceed as follows:

  • Open the PDF document with a PDF viewer such as “Adobe Reader” or “Acrobat”
  • Select "File -> Properties" in the menu
  • The fonts used are then listed under the "Fonts" tab

If the "Fonts" tab does not show any fonts, the texts may have been converted into curves or paths. This means that the texts have been vectorized and that these are shown exclusively from lines and areas.

Get help with handwriting recognition online through forums

If the handwriting recognition has failed and the research on the Internet was also unsuccessful, you can also turn to experts online. These are often found in Forums and discussion groups specializing in typography. There are often special areas where you can submit your concern or a screenshot for identification. Then all you have to do is wait and see whether other creative people can help.

Here are some forums and discussion groups where you can request fonts for recognition online:

The Typografie.info portal offers a special forum entitled “Which font is that?” In which font searches can be submitted using sample graphics or links.

Forum on Typografie.info

Another frequently used platform for font searches is MyFonts, the WhatTheFont Forum. If the handwriting recognition tool cannot produce the correct result, the request can also be made online here, including a screenshot.

WhatTheFont Forum

Typography.guru is an English-speaking forum that also specializes in typography. Font searches with images can be set under "Font Identification", which are then answered by typography experts.

Typography.guru forum

You can ask about anything on Quora - including fonts, of course. The Typeface Identification area is a great opportunity to post images of difficult-to-recognize fonts and seek advice from the community.

Quora forum

With Font ID there is also another discussion board that specializes in identifying fonts. An image can also be uploaded there. A short registration on the site is required to use it.

Font ID