Although, Windows has included pen support since the XP era, Microsoft hasn’t really focus on making digital ink an important part of the operating system. Throughout the years there has been improvements on annotations and drawing using a pen, but it’s not until the release of the Windows 10 Anniversary Update that we will see a Microsoft heavily investing resource to build a more capable inking support.
What’s Windows Ink
Windows Ink is just the new name Microsoft will be using to refer its existing digital ink support, which from now on the company will keep improving and making an essential part of the operating system.
The Anniversary Update will also make easier for developers to build Windows Ink support into their UWP apps. In addition, Microsoft is also introducing its own Ink Workspace in Windows 10 that will be the place to start for user to use the pen.
Windows Ink features
In its current state, Ink Workspace offers all the basic elements to start using the pen in Windows 10, including a sketchpad, screen sketch, and sticky notes. The feature also includes a list of apps that incorporates support for pen, and other apps you can download from the Store.
For now, everything looks pretty basic, but eventually features will get richer as Microsoft and developers build on top of it. The company demonstrated the new ink feature during its developer conference, which you can watch in the video below.
Microsoft even showed off the ruler and even though there is nothing special about a ruler, this feature alone works amazingly. You can use one finger to move the ruler around or two fingers to rotate or hold in position to draw your straight line on a sketchpad, on an app, or just on top Windows.
Changes are also coming on how users configure the Pen in Windows 10. In the new update, Microsoft is bringing the pen configuration options to the Settings app, instead of having to use a separate app.
Pen settings on Windows 10
In the Anniversary Update, the Settings app will include a Pen section inside of Devices. There, you will be able to configure various aspect, including turn off visual effects, disable the cursor, ignore touch input when using the pen, remove apps recommendations on the Pen Workspace, configured what happens when you single-click or double-click the pen button, and a lot more.
This is just the beginning, Microsoft still has a lot to do in Windows Ink. The company is even partnering with Wacom to create new guidelines that OEM can follow to create the ultimate pen experience on Windows 10.
Initially the new features will be included in Maps, Microsoft Edge, and Office apps. Developers will also be able to integrate the ink in their apps with just a couple of lines of code with the new Ink APIs.
Microsoft is set to bring the new Windows Ink functionalities later this summer with Windows 10 Anniversary update, but Insiders will be able to test the new feature in upcoming preview builds.
What do you think about Windows Ink? Let us know in the comments below.
Source The Verge