Microsoft OneNote Ink Support Comes to the Mac

Mac owners can finally use their drawing tablets to annotate OneNote content or directly scribble notes.

microsoft onenote support

A new update for OneNote, Microsoft's notetaking app, finally brings ink support to the Mac version of the software.

While Apple staunchly refuses to offer its Mac hardware with built-in touchscreens and stylus functionality, users can still scribble in their OneNote notebooks using variety of peripherals. Owners of the super-sized iPad Pro tablet and Apple Pencil have enjoyed inking support since late last year.

"Now you can write, draw and highlight with tools on the new Draw tab using your mouse or trackpad," said Scott Shapiro, product marketing manager for Microsoft OneNote, in July 21 announcement. "You can also use your third-party drawing tablet or display that uses a pen or stylus to write, draw and erase—just like pen and paper. And we've added lined pages and grids as a background option to help keep your new handwriting and drawings neat and tidy."

For Office 365 subscribers using Windows 10, Microsoft has added new ink effects to OneNote. New rainbow, gold and galaxy ink options join the standard selection of solid ink colors, adding some extra visual flair to notes and drawings.

OneNote Web Clipper, the companion Web browser add-on for Chrome, Safari and Internet Explorer, now includes the ability to import videos from YouTube and Vimeo. Also new is a preview mode that allows users to change the titles of their Web clippings as they capture them and shows those clippings as they will appear when they revisit them.

Users can now also clip multiple parts of a Webpage at once into a single OneNote page and change the look of clipped articles by changing their font sizes and types. Finally, the add-on supports text highlighting that persists after a clipping has been saved into OneNote.

A new email notification feature alerts users to changes to shared OneNote users. The collaboration feature is available to consumers, provided they have a Microsoft account. The notification service will send a maximum of five emails a day, but Microsoft may make adjustments in the future, said Shapiro.

The latest features are part of a steady stream of enhancements Microsoft has been layering onto the app, particularly in recent years following the advent of mobile-friendly rivals like Evernote and Google Keep.

Last week, the company added a new save option that allows students and teachers to take a copy of their OneNote class notebooks when they move on or change schools. Class notebooks are copied to the OneDrive cloud file storage service, allowing users to access them from practically anywhere. Microsoft hopes to add the "Save a copy" option to all notebook types and support for OneDrive for Business accounts.

In March, well ahead of last month's Evernote price hike, Microsoft released a data-import tool that makes it easier for Evernote users to make the switch to OneNote. On June 28, Evernote announced that its Plus pricing would go up by a dollar to $3.99 while Premium plans would jump to $7.99 per month from $5.99 previously. The Basic plan remains free but note-syncing is now restricted to two devices, down from unlimited.

Pedro Hernandez

Pedro Hernandez

Pedro Hernandez is a contributor to eWEEK and the IT Business Edge Network, the network for technology professionals. Previously, he served as a managing editor for the network of...