Fontdeck Display Problems

Posted by Mark Slocock on 09 October 2012

We have been having problems with the primary font on The Watch Gallery, the font we are using is only available from Fontdeck, a service that allows you to use licensed fonts on your website.  We currently pay a yearly fee for the privilege, but are less than impressed with the results.

I've taken a video of my experience browsing the website and you will see that on every page there is a 'flash' where the font is loaded and rendered on the screen, this is because the font is loaded via JavaScript after the page is loaded, so the page is rendered with a standard font first and then re-rendered using the font once downloaded.

In the video below you can clearly see the flash of the font being rendered, something I believe is unacceptable for a service that charges a yearly fee.  This rendering of the font is likely to adversely effect a customers experience when browsing the website.

There are serveral reasons why this method of delivering fonts is fundamentally flawed:

  • The font can't be cached meaning it is downloaded on every page view - rather than once on the first page view.
  • The JavaScript adds unnecessary weight to the page, causing additional load time
  • The 'flash' does not build the customers trust in the website

We contacted Fontdeck about the problem and were told our only option is to upgrade to the enterprise edition which would allow us to store the font in a CDN, the cost? $2,000 per year just to use the font.

Of course we could just use a different font, but this font is part of their branding and is supposed to be available for use on websites.  What does everyone else think - am I asking too much for wanting a beautiful font that can be cached and served from our servers without paying $2,000 per year?

Comments (2)

  • Richard Rutter Richard Rutter on October 10th, 2012

    I'm cofounder of Fontdeck. We can help you optimise the implementation of webfonts on your site. One of our guys will be in touch. Just to be clear though, the fonts are cached. We can help you prioritise how the fonts render so that the short delay you see is reduced and the priority of what is displayed can be altered as required.

  • Mark Slocock Mark Slocock on October 11th, 2012

    Richard, thank you for your comment I'll look forward to hearing from you guys - email me at mark at gpmd dot co dot uk or tweet.

    I would love to get this sorted out!

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