Microsoft has started providing a new preview build of Windows 11 for Windows Insiders, which tests a function that should have been around for decades: you can also write in all input fields with a pen.
Windows Insiders from the Dev Channel can now test Windows 11 Preview Build 23481, with which Microsoft is making a number of innovations available for the first time. The most important innovation is a function that allows you to use a stylus or your fingers on the touchscreen in all areas where the user can make entries with the keyboard.
Handwriting recognition should therefore work everywhere in input fields – no longer only in specialized software such as Microsoft OneNote or the special, larger input fields specified for it. Instead, users should be able to simply “write over the input field” in all possible places, be it in the Windows search, in the browser’s address bar, or anywhere else where text can be entered.
Improved handwriting recognition and scratch-out gesture
In the new build, users can not only make entries anywhere with a stylus but also erase and correct errors with a simple “scratch out” gesture. All of this is made possible by an “improvement in handwriting recognition technology,” according to Insider team members Amanda Langowski and Brandon LeBlanc in a blog post accompanying the release of Build 23481.
For the time being, there is a big catch with the improvement described here: the whole thing only works if the language setting for the operating system is set to “US/English”. According to Microsoft, other languages will be supported in the near future. Nevertheless, the improved pen input in the new preliminary version can also be tested in Germany as soon as the appropriate language setting is specified.
In addition to the improved pen input, the new build also brings some other innovations and changes with it, which Microsoft summarizes in its blog entry.
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