Most companies would find it upsetting if Apple were implementing system-level functionality that competed with their products. Not so with
Insider Software, makers of FontAgent Pro. In fact, Bob Leeds, CMO of Insider, says they actually welcome Apple’s upcoming Font Book.
Font Book will be a feature of Panther, the upcoming version of Mac OS X. It’s a font management system that lets you preview fonts with a double-click and manage fonts more easily through an iTunes-like interface that provides search, activation, and deactivation features.
FontAgent Pro is a font utility that handles the tasks of font management and repair in a single program. It can help users eliminate corrupt fonts, partial and unmatched fonts, duplicates, unnecessary point sizes, and generate optimized and organized font libraries. You can also use FontAgent Pro to build font libraries and sets, deactivate or activate them as necessary, preview them, and keep open only the fonts you need for current projects.
Wasn’t Insider Software concerned when Apple announced Font Book?
“We were, at first,” Leeds told MacCentral. “But once we learned more of Font Book and talked to our customers, we decided we’ll benefit from it. Apple is offering an easy way to handle font management, and this will introduce people to font management that perhaps didn’t realize they needed it. And once they learn more about font management, we think many Mac users will want to upgrade to a product with even fuller features and which can do font diagnosis.”
He added that FontAgent offers features beyond Font Book, such as more sophisticated font activation, the ability to have multiple font libraries, and testing and optimizing of fonts. FontAgent Pro also addresses issues of fonts in multi-user environments and a method of viewing fonts like a “movie.”
“Apple and Insider Software clearly have two differentiated products,” Leeds said. “Font Book is designed to do a little bit of everything, but nothing in depth as FontAgent Pro does. Hopefully, future versions of Font Book won’t encroach upon our product. But we’ll continue to add more high-end features to FontAgent Pro.”
FontAgent Pro requires Mac OS X 10.2 or later, 3MB of available disk space, and 7MB of memory. It has a suggested retail of US$99.95 ($89.95 for electronic download).