IBM's next turnaround tool is ... a new open-source font?

In with 'international and modern' typeface 'Plex', seeya later boring old Helvetica Neue

By Simon Sharwood, APAC Editor

Posted in Business, 9th November 2017 08:02 GMT

IBM's decided the time is right for a new corporate font.

Survivors of IBM's office consolidation have let it be known that come November 13th, Helvetica Neue will be off-brand within its rapidly-shrinking walls.

The company's ever-smaller workforce will instead be asked to use a typeface named “Plex”, which the company has helpfully open-sourced as a .ZIP file so we can all look like IBM documentation.

Sadly El Reg lacks a login to IBM's Brand Center, but the IBM Type GitHub repo says “IBM typography is international and modern to reflect our brand and our design principles.”

IBM's on a bit of a rebranding tear at the moment, having last week re-re-named its cloud from BlueMix to IBM Cloud, just a year after ditching the SoftLayer moniker.

Whether any of this activity can arrest the company's 22-quarters-and-counting of revenue decline is anyone's guess. At least the company's next round of financial presentations have an “international and modern” look free of Helvetica Neue.

Because typefaces are clearly the company's big problem right now. ®

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