Microsoft overhauled the Paint application in Windows 11, following years of neglect, but the company isn’t done yet. A dark mode and other changes are now in the works for Paint.
Microsoft has started rolling out an update to the Paint app to Windows 11 PCs in the Canary and Dev Channels of the Insider program. The new upgrade, version 11.2304.17.0, adds a new dark mode option to Paint. It will follow your system color scheme by default, but you can also set Paint to always stay in light or dark mode. Paint is just the latest long-running Windows function to receive a dark mode — Task Manager got the same treatment in the recent Windows 11 22H2 update.
The Paint update also changes the zoom function. Instead of the simple draggable bar to zoom in and out of the image, there’s now a dropdown menu with common percentage values. You can also type a percentage in the menu yourself. This is much closer to the zoom feature in Photoshop and other modern image editing tools. There’s also a one-click button to zoom the image to fit the current window.
Microsoft working on other changes to modernize Paint, too. The blog post explains, “We updated the ‘Image Properties’ dialogs to match the style of the new Windows 11 design and fit in with the new Paint app backdrop as well as many accessibility and usability improvements to dialogs throughout the app. We have also improved access key and keyboard shortcut support throughout the app for improved accessibility and productivity with keyboard.”
It’s great to see new features come to Paint, but it’s still incredibly far off from being anything more than a simple markup or paint application — there’s still no support for layers or non-destructive editing. You should still download Paint.net or another similar tool for more complex work.