How to use the Lexend font in G Suite

Seven different Lexend font options allow you to choose the width and spacing you prefer in Google Docs, Sheets and Slides.

  List of Lexend fonts (Deca, Exa, Giga, Mega, Peta, Tera, Zetta) on the left with a red arrow pointing to Google Docs icons, Sheets and Slides on the right

Illustration: Andy Wolber / TechRepublic

Google added in August 2019 a new source called Lexend for people to use in Google Docs, Sheets and Slides. Lexend will be of interest to anyone who wants to increase reading proficiency; The source can also be useful for people who spend a significant amount of time reading on screens. In the United States, people spend a lot of time watching screens; The Pew Research Center reported that "36% of adults with a college education or more connect online almost constantly."

Thomas Jockin designed the Lexend fonts for G Suite with the Google Fonts team, based on research conducted by Dr. Bonnie Shaver-Troup. The research identified three typographical factors that affect reading fluency:

  • Hyper expansion of the space between characters

  • Expanded forms of font contour

  • Sans-serif font to reduce noise.

SEE: G Suite: Tips and tricks for business professionals (Free PDF) (TechRepublic)

Google added not one, but seven Lexend fonts, with varied widths and spaces: these options allow Each person selects the source that is easier to read. In G Suite, the width and spacing of each Lexend font increase in alphabetical sequence: Deca, Exa, Giga, Mega, Peta, Tera, Zetta ( Figure A ). The text in Lexend Exa will be wider than Lexend Deca, for example, while Lexend Zetta will be the widest of all.

Figure A

  Screenshot of an example sentence (

In Google Docs, Sheets and Slides, there are seven Lexend fonts that you can install and use Each font offers a different width and spacing.

By way of comparison, Lexend Deca produces wider text than other highly readable sans serif fonts, such as Arial, Calibri, Tahoma and Verdana Lexend Deca is noticeably wider than Andika, a font designed for new readers, and Roboto, a font found on many Android devices ( Figure B ).

Figure B

  Sample prayer (

Lexend Deca, the narrowest Lexend font in G Suite, offers greater width and spacing than many other commonly used sources.

If you use Google Docs, Sheets or Sli des, you can add one or all seven Lexend fonts.

How to add the Lexend font in Google Docs, Sheets or Slides in Chrome

The following sequence works in both Google Docs and Google Sheets. In Google Slides, the cursor must be active in a text field (click inside any text box while editing a Slide) before you can follow these instructions.

1. Open a Google Doc in Chrome on a desktop / laptop computer.
2. Select the source menu (the triangle pointing down to the right of the name of the source shown).
3. Select More sources at the top of the menu options listed ( Figure C ).

Figure C

  Screenshot of the font drop-down menu.

Select More fonts from the font drop-down menu.

4. Enter "Lexend" in the search box.
5. Click or tap each source you want available as an option ( Figure D ).

Figure D

  Screen capture of Google Docs font search results, with the seven Lexend fonts selected ". -Original =" /r/2019/08/21/e49a4d87-a0b3-4778-9a35-386b6fbd7736/resize/770x/f8448aa39c6824845cbdf656f4f7cba1/b-searchlexendadd37.jpg Screen capture of Google Docs font search results, with the seven selected fonts .

Search for "Lexend" and click or tap each source you want to add.