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The New Surface Pen Enhances the Office 365 Experience

With the announcement of the new Surface Pro and Surface Pen, Office 365 is getting a new stylus and inking capabilities.

surface pen, office 365

Microsoft is having quite the year so far, announcing many new Surface products with the new Surface Pen being chief among them. The new Surface Laptop was featured at the Microsoft Build 2017 conference, and the new Surface Pro tablet/laptop hybrid with the much-improved Surface Pen came during a reveal at a Shanghai Keynote conference. Corporate VP of Devices Panos Panay lead the presentation, placing a special emphasis on the Surface Pen and the abilities it will possess when it ships later this year.

The New Surface Pen

The improved stylus pen has many new features that will be useful for artists as well as Office 365 users. Here is a short list of the new features from the Surface Pen:

  • 4,096 pressure points of intensity, about 4x the amount of the original stylus pen (from 1,024)
  • The new Tilt feature can drastically change the appearance of the lines you draw, changing thickness, texture, and contrast
  • Reduced latency allows the Surface Pen to be much more responsive on-screen for inking or selecting things within Office 365 apps
  • 3 interactive buttons that change the functionality of the Surface Pen:
surface pen, office 365

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    • Top button (1) - Click once to open OneNote automatically and click twice to take a screenshot
    • AAAA battery (2) - The Surface Pen uses an AAAA battery to power its functions
    • Right-Click button (3) - Click this button when using the pen to act as a right-click action on a mouse; this button may have different uses in certain applications
    • Erase button (4) - Hold this button down to use the pen tip to erase on-screen
    • Tip (5) - Multi-pressure point and angle sensitive pen tip allows you to write, draw, select, and more

Draw Mode in Office 365

With the new additions to the Surface Pen’s functionality, new opportunities to use the improved stylus will become available for Office 365 users in June 2017. Word, Excel, and PowerPoint will be getting their own versions of Draw Mode, which was demonstrated in Shanghai using PowerPoint. Specialized pens, pencils, highlights, brushes, effects, and more will be available within the apps using either by touch with a finger or the Surface Pen (recommended for more detailed drawing and writing).

Under the Draw tab, Office 365 users will also be able to customize their gallery of pens, pencils, highlighters, and more under Pens, adding or removing pen styles to create a digital pencil box of sorts that will be available across all apps on all your devices.   

For all Surface Pen and Office 365 queries, feel free to contact our staff today!

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