Something I look forward to: Microsoft has started rolling out the significant changes to OneNote that it introduced last August, including a visual overhaul and new organization features, with more to come. The biggest additions to the note-taking app include dictation with smart pens, voice, AI, and cameras. If you don’t know which of the two Windows versions of OneNote will receive the changes, Microsoft plans to unify them.
Microsoft’s update to OneNote starts this week for current channel users, primarily with improvements to smart pen dictation. OneNote can now create pixel-perfect versions of the shapes users try to draw with Windows Ink. Handwriting can now be converted to text of the correct font size, and a digital ruler can help users draw straight lines.
OneNote can now also automatically sort pages by name and date. Users can still manually order and the app will remember their choices. OneNote can now update while the system is locked, which should make it easier to get these new features. Office Insiders are getting a couple more features starting this week. Now you can insert images into notes with a camera and share documents with your co-workers more easily.
In the coming months, new dictation voice commands will allow users to do things like delete content or pause dictation just by speaking. Automatic punctuation is coming too, so you no longer have to say “period” or “question mark” to separate sentences.
The visual overhaul includes changes to the navigation panes, full screen mode, page list, section tabs, and notebook dropdown menu. Unread content should become easier to notice, and an optional simplified ribbon can save users screen space.