Microsoft announce design overhaul for OneNote

Microsoft is in the process of rolling out the changes it teased last August to its popular app, OneNote. These changes include a visual overhaul and enhanced features that are yet to come. The biggest additions to the note-taking app involve dictation with smart pens, voice, AI, and cameras. You might be wondering which of the two Windows versions of OneNote will receive the updates. Microsoft has plans to merge them in the future.

New Features

The design changes allow OneNote to fit in more seamlessly with the Windows 11 aesthetic. The navigation panes and full-screen mode are being updated, and the page list, section tabs, and notebook dropdown all look different, too. Microsoft will be bringing the Mica effect to OneNote’s general app window.

All the changes have created a more up-to-date look for OneNote, with rounded corners and updated animations. A new unread indicator also helps users see pages that are changed, helping them keep up to date. OneNote will also get an optional simplified ribbon, which is something in between hiding the ribbon and using the full-height version.

If you’ve been looking to use more of OneNote’s features, the latest version includes features that are similar to Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. Features such as Ink to shape, Ruler, and Ink to text are all present in this updated version. Handwriting can now convert into text of the right font size, and a digital ruler can help users draw straight lines.

OneNote also includes support for the Surface Slim Pen 2 and its tactile signals that mimic the feel of a pen on paper. Microsoft is also planning to add ink replay and a new pen focus view that transforms OneNote into a “pen-first experience.”

In addition, OneNote will allow users to sort pages by date created, date modified, or alphabetically. A new sharing feature and the ability to insert pictures from the camera app are currently available to testers. The rest of the improvements and changes are coming soon.

As Microsoft updates the main OneNote desktop app, it plans to bring key features from the touch-friendly OneNote for Windows 10 over to the main unified app. Since there is no exact date for when this work will be completed, expect the OneNote for Windows 10 app to remain available for quite a while.

Interested in finding out how your business can get more from OneNote or other Microsoft products? Get in touch with us today. Our Microsoft-certified experts will be happy to talk you through the options and answer any questions you might have.

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