Microsoft Adds Layer Functionality to MS Paint Finally

MS Paint gets long awaited features in recent update

Microsoft Paint has been a core part of Windows for nearly 38 years since the release of Windows 1.0 in 1985. Despite the “Paint 3D” update in recent years, the drawing capabilities in Windows have not changed much over the decades.

From Windows 98 to today’s Windows 11, the updates to Paint have mostly involved minor UI tweaks and additions of brushes and shapes.

But now, Paint is about to receive its biggest update ever.

In a post on the official Microsoft website, product manager Dave Grochocki announced two major new features coming to Paint:

One is layer support, the other is support for PNG transparency.

With these updates, Paint’s capabilities will suddenly become comparable to those of Photoshop.

After decades of stagnation, it seems a bit absurd that such basic “power user” features are only just being added now.

This belated progress may seem laughable from a practical standpoint, but it is iconic in internet meme culture, like IE’s “slow response” memes.

After all, how many people actually used Paint for serious image editing versus doodling?

Originally, Paint only supported simple monochrome bitmaps. With continuous Windows updates over the years, it gradually added support for color, JPG, GIF, and more in the 1990s, increasing in capabilities.

Microsoft’s shifting product lineup spelled the end of Paint’s decades-long run. In 2017, Microsoft planned to stop updating the classic 30+ year old software, citing their development of “Paint 3D”.

The news caused an uproar online. Countless users who grew up with Paint in the 80s and 90s launched a “Save Paint” movement, sadly typing “RIP Paint”.

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Renowned Paint expert Jim’ll Paint It joined the protests. Known for using Paint to make highly imaginative art, he vowed to continue using the XP version because it was core to his work.

In summary, after 38 years of small iterative updates, Paint is finally getting major new features comparable to advanced editors like Photoshop. While not necessarily practical for most, it highlights the absurdity and nostalgia of Paint’s meme-level basicness. 

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Microsoft Adds Layer Functionality to MS Paint Finally

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