The newest beta of Microsoft Office gives iPad users the option to convert handwriting done with an Apple Pencil or other stylus into text using Apple’s Scribble system. It’ll should be available to all in the near future.
Apple’s handwriting-recognition system uses AI to recognize letters and words, and will allow users to quickly edit a document or spreadsheet on the go with a stylus. But it could also be used to write entire Word docs.
Apple’s Scribble handwriting recognition coming to Microsoft Word, Excel, Powerpoint
Scribble debuted in iPadOS 14. It can be used to enter text by writing on the screen, either print or cursive. iPad owners can enter text using a wide range of styli, not just the Apple Pencil. It works in most places a keyboard does.
And that’ll soon include Word Excel and Powerpoint. “Office Mobile now supports the Apple’s Scribble, allowing you to convert your handwriting to text in Office creations,” Microsoft said in the release notes of the new beta. “This new feature allows you to insert and edit text in your document, presentation, or worksheet on your iPad using your Apple Pencil.”
Users access Apple’s handwriting recognition system through the Scribble Pen button on the Draw tab on the various applications.
The feature is part of the Microsoft Office 2.64 beta and not yet in the shipping version of the applications. Currently, the iPad versions of Word, Excel, and Powerpoint are still on version 2.63.2.