Typography

The SF Compact font is the system font on Apple Watch. There are two variants of this font: SF Compact Text and SF Compact Display. When you specify the system font for text in labels and other system interface elements, Apple Watch automatically applies the most appropriate version of the font based on the point size. It also switches fonts automatically as needed.

Choose the correct font variant to use in mockups of your app. Choose SF Compact Text for labels whose text is 19 points or smaller. Choose SF Compact Display for labels whose text is 20 points or larger. These point sizes are for mockup images whose resolution is 144 pixels per inch.

Use no more than one additional typeface in your app. Custom typefaces are supported, but using too many can make the interface feel disorderly, and you may need to use a larger point size to ensure legibility. You must also implement support for features like Dynamic Type yourself.

Size fonts to be legible. Users often view content while walking or running. Adjust the size of text to ensure its legibility when the user is moving.

Emphasize the most important information. Use font weight, size, and color to highlight the most important information.

Avoid using thin weights at small sizes. The system font specifically omits the ultra light and thin weights below 20 points because they are not legible at small sizes. You should similarly avoid thin weights for custom fonts in similar situations.

Download the San Francisco fonts here.

watchOS uses San Francisco as the system font for Latin, Greek and Cyrillic alphabets, and a variety of other typefaces for other scripts.

Text Styles

The built-in type styles let you express your content in ways that are visually distinct and that also take advantage of key typographic features, such as Dynamic Type.

Use the built-in styles for their intended purposes. Specifically:

Style Usage
Headline Use for titles and critical information that needs to capture the user’s attention.
Body Use for longer blocks of text. Use this style for the bulk of your content.
Caption 1 Use for short form text that does not span several lines.
Caption 2 Use for short form text that is secondary to Caption 1 text.
Footnote Use for secondary content that you do not want to distract from the main content.

Use the built-in text styles as much as possible. The built-in styles support Dynamic Type, which automatically adjusts tracking and leading for every font size. The styles are all based on the system font and take advantage of other typographic features at appropriate times. For details about the tracking adjustments, see Tracking.

Dynamic Type

Both variants of the SF Compact typeface were designed to be highly legible, even at very small sizes. Dynamic Type provides additional flexibility by letting readers choose their preferred text size. Download a dynamic type size table in Resources.

  • xSmall

    Style Weight Size (Points) Leading (Points) Tracking (1/1000em)
    Headline Semi-Bold 14 16.5 +14
    Body Regular 14 16.5 +14
    Caption 1 Regular 13 15.5 +16
    Caption 2 Regular 12 14.5 +20
    Footnote Regular 11 13.5 +24

    Not all apps express tracking values as 1/1000em. Point size based on image resolution of 144ppi for @2x designs.

  • Small (Default 38mm)

    Style Weight Size (Points) Leading (Points) Tracking (1/1000em)
    Headline Semi-Bold 15 17.5 +4
    Body Regular 15 17.5 +4
    Caption 1 Regular 14 16.5 +14
    Caption 2 Regular 13 15.5 +16
    Footnote Regular 12 14.5 +20

    Not all apps express tracking values as 1/1000em. Point size based on image resolution of 144ppi for @2x designs.

  • Large (Default 42mm)

    Style Weight Size (Points) Leading (Points) Tracking (1/1000em)
    Headline Semi-Bold 16 18.5 +0
    Body Regular 16 18.5 +0
    Caption 1 Regular 15 17.5 +4
    Caption 2 Regular 14 16.5 +14
    Footnote Regular 13 15.5 +16

    Not all apps express tracking values as 1/1000em. Point size based on image resolution of 144ppi for @2x designs.

  • xLarge

    Style Weight Size (Points) Leading (Points) Tracking (1/1000em)
    Headline Semi-Bold 17 19.5 -4
    Body Regular 17 19.5 -4
    Caption 1 Regular 16 18.5 0
    Caption 2 Regular 15 17.5 +4
    Footnote Regular 14 16.5 +14

    Not all apps express tracking values as 1/1000em. Point size based on image resolution of 144ppi for @2x designs.

  • xxLarge

    Style Weight Size (Points) Leading (Points) Tracking (1/1000em)
    Headline Semi-Bold 18 20.5 -8
    Body Regular 18 20.5 -8
    Caption 1 Regular 17 19.5 -4
    Caption 2 Regular 15 18.5 0
    Footnote Regular 15 17.5 +4

    Not all apps express tracking values as 1/1000em. Point size based on image resolution of 144ppi for @2x designs.

  • xxxLarge

    Style Weight Size (Points) Leading (Points) Tracking (1/1000em)
    Headline Semi-Bold 19 21.5 -12
    Body Regular 19 21.5 -12
    Caption 1 Regular 18 20.5 -8
    Caption 2 Regular 17 19.5 -4
    Footnote Regular 16 18.5 0

    Not all apps express tracking values as 1/1000em. Point size based on image resolution of 144ppi for @2x designs.

Tracking

Use SF Compact Text for sizes below 20pt (@2x / 144 ppi). Use SF Compact Display for sizes 20pt or greater. Interpolate tracking values for font sizes between the listed values.

  • SF Compact Text

    Size (Points) Tracking (1/1000em)
    5.5 +110
    6 +50
    7 +30
    10 +30
    11 +24
    12 +20
    13 +17
    14 +14
    15 +4
    16 0
    17 -4
    18 -8

    Not all apps express tracking values as 1/1000em. Point size based on image resolution of 144ppi for @2x designs.

  • SF Compact Display

    Size (Points) Tracking (1/1000em)
    20 0
    25 -10
    44 -20
    77 and up -25

    Not all apps express tracking values as 1/1000em. Point size based on image resolution of 144ppi for @2x designs.