While thinking about how will a piece of documentation in HTML look on the iPhone and the iPad, I’ve realized my ignorance of which fonts are available on iPhone OS. They should be a subset of fonts on Mac OS X, but it’s hard to play a guessing game of which ones exactly (besides Helvetica).
iPhone Font Browser (opensource) by Adrian Kosmaczewski served really well to quickly compile it and run on my device (iPhone) and on the iPad simulator at the same time.
The situation on the iPhone (v3.1.3) is a little better than when Gruber tested it in 2007—e.g. there is Courier now besides just Courier New and few more fonts that I don’t recognize, but which have fine looking thin variants—but it’s on the iPad (v3.2) where the difference is really something.
We already know that the iPad ships with Baskerville, Cochin and Palatino—we’ve seen it in videos of the iBooks app—but what’s also in the box are Didot, Optima, Futura, Gill Sans and Hoefler Text. It’s almost like folk from Apple read Gruber’s post and decided to finally remedy the mistake of keeping these great fonts off the phone. The bad news is that some italic variants are still missing, and that Copperplate is among the iPad bunch, too.
It’s almost certain that the iPhone 3.2 update will bring these fonts to the phone, too.