Google makes drawing more powerful with Keep update

The free note-taker gains the ability to decipher handwriting into text.

Google Keep

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Keep may forever be one of the more underrated apps in Google’s stable, but that hasn’t stopped its development. And there’s a new version on its way to the Play Store that adds a subtle but important new feature for note-takers.

If you’re someone who likes to scribble in Keep rather than type, Google has implemented a way to convert your handwriting into text. Once the new update lands in the Play Store (or if you can’t wait, sideload the Google-signed APK from APKMirror), you’ll see a new Grab image text option in the top-right menu. Tap it when you’re done drawing and it will attempt to convert any words it sees to actual text. It’s a similar trick to the optical character recognition Keep uses to pull text out of images—and there’s no guarantee it will be able to decipher your chicken scratch—but it should be a nifty tool for old-fashioned note-takers.

Why this matters: Even though it’s not one of Google's most popular apps, it’s good to see it paying attention to Keep. This is a small feature for sure, but it shows that Google is still focused on delivering top-notch features to a small segment of its audience.

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