Adobe Teams With Microsoft on Ink Tech for Upcoming Windows 10 Update

By Darryl K. Taft  |  Posted 2016-04-05 Print this article Print
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With the Windows Ink APIs, "Together we will unlock new natural ways of interacting with our apps with Windows Ink," Gallo said in a blog post. "Just two lines of code enable you to bring the 'Hello World' of Windows Ink into your apps through the InkCanvas and new InkToolbar controls. One level down, the InkPresenter provides a powerful and flexible way to extend the InkToolbar and to create customize ink experiences. In all cases, the platform provides beautiful low-latency ink rendering, handwriting recognition, and ink data management."

Anubhav Rohatgi, group product manager for design at Adobe, said Adobe and Microsoft have been working together to add simultaneous pen and touch capabilities inside of Adobe Illustrator. Developers and designers can use Adobe Creative Cloud tools on Microsoft devices, namely the Surface Pro, to allow creativity to flow wherever they are, he said. The Illustrator blush is extremely responsive because it uses Windows Ink. Being able to use pen and touch makes the whole experience feel more intuitive and efficient.

"Adobe has been a close partner with Microsoft for years—for example, Adobe has added native support for pen, touch, and high DPI displays in several of our CC [Creative Cloud] apps for Windows and the Surface Pro, Rohatgi said. "As the leader in creative tooling, Adobe has been providing to Microsoft our expertise in the needs for improving the user experience on Windows for our creative users, and we're delighted to see Microsoft bringing this to the Windows platform and Surface devices."

Rohatgi said the focus of the demo at Build was to show the benefits of using pen and touch simultaneously with Illustrator as an example. "The summer update to Windows 10 will deliver this new capability which hasn't been available before," he told eWEEK. "We provided a demo of Illustrator which shows how a creative can replicate their natural way of working with pen and touch at the same time. This is how creatives are used to working with pen and paper, so now we are seeing the digital drawing experience come even closer to a natural drawing experience."

To perfect the technology, Adobe worked together with Microsoft for more than 18 months to influence simultaneous pen and touch. Microsoft took stylus and inking workflows seriously right after Surface Pro 2 and did a great job with Surface Pro 3, he said.

"It is still the only active stylus in the market," Rohatgi noted. "On hover feedback really helps users discover stylus functionality and work with the stylus on touch- and stylus-enabled computers. Microsoft is also investing a lot in inking and stylus and looking to get broad adoption of stylus by other OEMs.

Rohatgi said he believes the pen and ink technology Adobe delivered to Microsoft to be very significant. "The default inking experience on Windows is significantly better," he noted. "This used to take a lot of engineering resources to build well in the past but is now part of the OS natively." However, Rohatgi said Adobe did not develop this technology for Microsoft from scratch. "We only used the APIs in our application," he said.



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