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Droid fonts from Google (Android SDK)

Update 10Feb2009: The Droid fonts are now available from android.git.kernel.org (Download tar.gz archive), under the Apache License, Version 2.0. Ascender (the company who created Droid), has now a dedicated website at http://www.droidfonts.com/ (thanks Rex!). At this dedicated website, Ascender presents the Droid Pro family which has several additions to Droid. For the open-source crowd, it is important to have the initial Droid font family dual-licensed under the “OpenFont License”, which would enable the best use with the rest of the OFL licensed fonts.

Two years ago, Google bought a start-up called Android in order to deliver an open platform for mobile applications. A few days ago the Android SDK has been released and you can develop now Android applications that can run in the emulator. Android handsets are expected at some point next year.

Even if you do not plan to develop applications for Android, you can still run the emulator which is functional, includes quite a few samples, and comes with a browser shown above. To get it, download the Android SDK for your system, uncompress it and run


An interesting aspect of Android is that it comes with a set of fonts that have been specially designed for mobile devices, the Droid fonts. The fonts are embedded in the Android image, in android_sdk_linux_m3-rc20a/tools/lib/images/system.img, a clever guy managed to extract them and a modest guy corrected me (Damien's blog to download).

The fonts are probably licensed under the same license as the SDK (Apache License), however it is better to hear from Google first.

In the meantime, here is a screenshot of Ubuntu 7.10 with Droid.

Update: To extract the fonts from the SDK, run the emulator with the -console parameter. The emulator starts and at the same time you get a shell to the filesystem of the running emulator. You can locate the fonts in system/fonts/. Once located the full path of a file, you can extract with ./adb pull system/fonts/DroidSans.ttf /tmp/DroidSans.ttf (thanks cosmix for the tip).

Comments (8) Trackbacks (0)
  1. I can’t take credit for the clever extraction, that was Benno @ http://benno.id.au/blog/2007/11/14/android-filesystems

    I just copied the files out from there and repackaged them.


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  2. @Damien: Thanks, I updated the post.

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  3. The fonts look quite good for Greek, except from the Gamma glyph, “γ”. I hope they are under a free license. I’ll give the sdk a spin.. Thanks for the info Simos 🙂

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  4. Apparently the Download link has been temporarily removed.
    Is there any other download link?


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  5. @Angel: Check out Benno’s blog entry,

    It’s in the system.tar.gz archive.

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  6. According to Ascender the fonts are under the Apache licence.

    You can extract them from a running emulator very easily — start the emulator, open a shell to the running ‘android’ system (with ./adb shell or ./emulator -console) , find the files in the android filesystem and then use adb pull to copy the 8 font files to the host machine.

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  7. grab the fonts here:


    so much fuss about nothing…

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  8. Ascender just released OpenType Pro versions of the Droid fonts here: http://www.droidfonts.co​m . This might be interesting to creative professionals who would like to use the Droid fonts in their design projects.

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