San Francisco’s new diacritics

The new design of the San Francisco typeface is, unfortunately, a step down in terms of legibility for users using Latin characters with diacritics like me.

Here's a comparison of the before and after of the new update:

Diacritics in iOS 14 has a lower height than those in iOS 13
Diacritics in iOS 14 has a lower height than those in iOS 13
Close up view of diacritics in iOS 14
Close up view of diacritics in iOS 14

The problem isn't the usual “find Waldo” UI nitpicking. I only found it because it was much harder for me to read, and keep in mind, I'm 18 years old.

Outline comparison of different diacritics

I hope this is just an oversight on Apple's part, but if this goes through to public release, I don't think I can recommend the new update to my parents, considering they're already using the enlarged system font size setting.

Apart from the size change, there's a new design for the diacritics as well.

New diacritics design

The WWDC session video didn't address this change, but the description is undoubtedly ironic.

Learn how to achieve exceptional typography in your app's user interface that enhances legibility, accessibility, and consistency across Apple platforms.

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