let pen usage toggle between inking and pointer
The January 2016 Office update defaults the Surface Pen to an inking tool. Most Excel users prefer to use the pen as a pointer. Please give us a toggle in the ribbon to switch between inking and pointing.
(2016-03-15 – Completed) (Edit: Added link to Office Insider signup)
I wanted to let everyone know that in the update to Office that started rolling out to Insiders today, you will find a new preference in the Options dialog to allow you to make the pen select instead of ink by default. Enabling this preference will make the pen function exactly like it did before, plus you can use the options on the Draw tab if you do decide you want to ink. If you are an Office Insider (which anyone can join – https://products.office.com/en-us/office-insider), you should get this update within the next day or so. If you are not an Office Insider, it may take another week or two to reach you.
This is a per-app preference, so you can enable selection by default in Excel for instance while leaving ink as the default in Word and PowerPoint, or you can switch all three. To access this preference select File > Options, and then in the Options dialog select Advanced and check ‘Use pen to select and interact with content by default’ in the new Pen section.
We’ll be releasing the second piece, which is the ability to toggle on pen selection via the Draw tab for those that only want to use the pen to select occasionally, with the next monthly update.
Thanks again to all of you for your feedback, and we hope this change addresses your concerns.
(2016-02-29 – Started)
I wanted to first thank all of you for your feedback. We’ve heard you loud and clear, and as a result we are actively working on two changes:
1 – For people that want to use the pen as a precise pointer temporarily, we will introduce the ability to do that via a button on the Draw tab. This will keep the new default of having the pen ink on the document canvas, but give the ability to use the pen to do selection when needed.
2 – For people that want or need to use the pen like a mouse by default, we will also add a new preference to the Options dialog that will allow you to restore the previous behavior. If you want to ink, that will be easier than before because you’ll be able to just tap a pen on the Draw tab and start inking, but you will be able to set your default behavior to be that the pen selects, just like it was before the update.
We are actively working on making these changes so that we can get them out to you as soon as possible. Note that you may see #2 (the preference in the Options dialog) appear first, because we are prioritizing getting that change to you based on your feedback.
(2016-02-25 – Under Review)
Thanks all for the feedback, we’re looking at this area now.
You’re correct that this is a change with the latest update to Office 2016, if you have an O365 subscription. Throughout Office (and across platforms – Windows, iOS, Android, etc.), we are moving towards having the pen do what it does on paper: draw ink. Using this you can annotate your documents, convert ink into shapes and flowcharts, and more.
You should still be able to use your finger to select, resize, change text color, etc. however. This change should only affect your use of the pen.
Now all that said, we’re always open to your feedback on any change we make, so we are now looking into providing a way to allow you to go back to the legacy behavior.
James Wetmur commented
Why is there no way to change the stylus default to write in the latest version of Office (365)? This means that one cannot use the stylus in office!
Please return the toggle back, this is terrible :(
I agree with the comments below, this change is a stupid idea, please allow a toggle between inking and pointer.
What a really dumb idea. Love my pen and use it for everything and now it is useless
Also request this. Pretty much makes pen useless without this option
Yeah, please make the button, i tried the online repair but was not successful.
I was able to fix by doing an online repair, not sure if rolled back to earlier version though: