PDF Annotation: Inking

  • +1 I would support inking as a paid add-on
  • edited October 6, 2021
    +1, I would also pay for this feature.
  • +1

    but from a technical perspective, I would love to have handwriting recognition (if there is a free library?)
    I would also love to export may handwritten annotations, but how would organization of those annotations work?
    It is a mess already, as they get exported without metadata into one note, getting from there to writing is clumsy. relating and linking those, like in a digital Zettelkasten, would be perfect.

    Then there would be nothing missing for my workflow.
  • +1

    Inking was the main reason that I was so excited about the Zotero iOS app. It would significantly streamline my process for reading papers (and keep everything in one place). I would happily pay for this as an add-on feature and many of my friends in graduate school would too.
  • edited October 19, 2021
    We've added ink annotations in the latest iOS build.

    Ink annotations created on iOS will sync to the desktop app and be viewable in the desktop PDF reader. Ink annotations aren't currently editable on desktop and won't yet appear in the annotations sidebar there.

    Thanks to everyone who chimed in asking for this feature. Please start new threads for any issues you encounter when testing it out.
  • This is amazing @dstillman!

    On iPhone, the inking is limited to only the 5 colors that were available for highlighting. Would it be possible to add darker colors, such as black, dark blue, dark green, red?
  • @dstillman: Thank you very much, this surprise made my day!
  • As I am waiting for a linux based E Ink E-reader with color and 13inch size,
    to install the main program at, I want to ask if this feature will come to the full version as well? so everyone with the main program (linux, windows, osx) and a stylus can use it?

    thanks so far for the progress!
  • Awesome! Thank you!
  • @dstillman
    Does it means that it's still not possible to make hand-written(Ink) annotation on desktop version of Zotero? (windows-based, linux or OS X, whatever)
    Even include Ink in the built-in note adding function would be very helpful,as I believe hand writing is the most efficient way for people to organize ideas.
    More specifically speaking, I hope that Ink function can be implemented into note function.
    It's pretty inefficient to make hand written notes with 3rd party software which supports Ink, and save is as independent files then attach them into zotero
  • @dstillman Thank you for this feature, and the so far fantastic iOS app! I am however still missing (or perhaps simply have not been able to find) one crucial element which PaperShip offered and that is the option to highlight with the inking feature. Similar to @tmoss I am working with a lot of non-OCRed text, so I would love to be able to highlight using the ink feature. However, as it works on on my end at the moment, the ink is completely opaque, so it is impossible to read any text below my strokes. If it would be possible to implement some form of ink colour that has an opacity similar to the highlight feature (or like the PaperShip feature) that would be immensely useful.

    (Apologies if necroing this thread is a forum faux pas, I just felt it fit this topic exactly so did not want to start a completely new thread!)
  • Ink annotations are great, thank you! Different colours for inking and highlighting would be helpful so that you can quickly switch between e.g. highlighting in yellow and writing in blue
  • A big YES vote for multicolor inking and highlighting on PDFs that can be categorized (or tagged) and extracted as notes according to color.
    This would add an extreme amount of value to anyone using zotero/zotfile for literature searching and surveying in support of journal and book writing, QDA, et al.
    Love Zotero and more and more see it becoming my central CMS as it matures.

    Now if only those silly Luddites over at Scrivener would cooperate and add full sync support for zotero without having to use MS Word to more easily get things right on the manuscript page, the world would be great again. ;-).
  • Ink annotations are great but it would be even better if we could chose the pen size or if the size would adapt to the zoom level, in the same way that adobe reader does. Indeed, it’s complicated to write on the margins with the current pen size.
    Keep going, the app is wonderful !
  • Just wanted to hopefully help some folks who may want to ink on a windows computer. I am currently using a microsoft tablet and i use microsoft edge to annotate/ink my PDF documents. I was really upset that Zotero did not allow me to do so within their dekstop app... until I found a semi-work around! You can change your preferences in zotero under general to open the PDFs in microsoft edge or whatever browser you use to annotate. When you save the document after annotating, the save will happen within zotero.
  • I'm having MS Surface Pro X and working in similar manner as ango1267 mentioned above.

    Any plans to enhance inking / stylus features on Windows builds because it would be great to get other annotations included as well?

  • +1

    Inking is extremely helpful not only for tablet platform such as iOS and Android, but also Windows as we can annotate in PDFs using a pen tablet.
  • +1

    I'm also working frequently with my MS Surface Go and would be happy if there would be support for windows devices in general as well.
  • +1

    Inking with MS Surface Pen for Windows version would be great.
  • +1 from me. The most important next feature imo. :) Thanks for your work!
  • +1
    Currently using a Surface Pro 8 and would love this feature
  • +1
    I want this feature too.
  • +1 from me for Windows
  • +1 from Windows
  • +1 from a long time Zotero / surface user. The built-in viewer is impressive, nicely designed w/ multi-tabs - but I can't use it if I can't draw on PDFs. Thanks
  • +1 for me for Windows as well
  • +1 for me for Windows as well
  • +1 for inking feature on Windows
  • +1 from Mac Air and iPad Sidecar user
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