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Microsoft backs Android Wear and iOS 8 with new OneNote apps

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Cross-platform improvements continue

Google’s range of smartwatches have only been available for a few months, but that’s not stopping Microsoft from throwing its support behind Android Wear. A new Android version of Microsoft’s popular OneNote application is being released today with Android Wear support. Initiating the "OK Google, take a note" voice command will trigger OneNote to listen and take notes accordingly. It’s fairly simple functionality, but it’s another example of Microsoft’s willingness to support rival platforms.

Alongside the Android updates, Microsoft is also improving its iOS version of OneNote for iPhone and iPad owners today. A new share extension requires iOS 8, but it allows you to share content from any app to OneNote. You can clip websites from Safari, save photos from an iOS library, and even import file attachments from emails. It’s a good demonstration of the functionality that Apple’s latest version of iOS enables, and an easy way for Microsoft to extend its note taking app throughout iOS apps.

If you’re a Windows Phone owner then you’re not being totally left out of the improvements for iOS and Android. Microsoft is updating its Office Lens app today to convert images captured from whiteboard notes or paper documents into Word or PowerPoint files. Office Lens has always supported OneNote, but the new Word and PowerPoint functionality turns simple whiteboard notes and drawings into fully editable text in Word or drawings that can be recolored, resized, and edited in PowerPoint. If you’re a regular whiteboard user then it’s like lifting a presentation from a board straight into a digital asset that can be manipulated endlessly.

It’s increasingly clear that OneNote is a major asset to Microsoft that it will continue to improve across a variety of platforms to compete with Evernote and other rivals. Microsoft’s Surface Pro 3 pen integration with OneNote was a big step in highlighting the simple note taking app, and Android Wear support is another method to convince those curious about Microsoft’s apps and services. All three app updates will be available today from their relevant app stores.