Microsoft brings layers and transparency to Paint

The native Windows 11 image editing application will benefit from a major update. Microsoft finally agrees to offer support for layers and transparency in Paint.

Right now, Paint seems to have Microsoft’s full attention. The Redmond firm, which is constantly updating its image editing and retouching utility, has just submitted a new version of its tool which includes new features that we no longer expected.

Layer management and transparency support

Microsoft Paint will finally support layers and transparency. Functions that until now were only found on more advanced image editors like Photoshop and that users have been asking Microsoft for years. These two new features, integrated in version 11.2308.18.0, are currently only available to members of the Insider program using a build of Windows 11 from the Developer or Canary channel.

With this major update, you will be able to add, remove and manage layers to create much more complex visuals than usual in Paint. Microsoft’s tool is now capable of superimposing visuals, texts and other graphic elements on top of each other. The layers are grouped in a new sidebar grafted to the right of the interface. It is from this panel that you can rearrange the superposition order of your layers, and that you can choose to hide some of them. It is also from this pane that you can duplicate your layers, delete them, or merge several of them together.


But what would layers be like without transparency support? Microsoft has not forgotten this very important detail since Paint now knows how to open and save files in transparent .PNG format. As in Photoshop, when you import an image incorporating transparency, it is identifiable in Paint through the checkerboard pattern.

The arrival of layers and transparency in Paint was quite predictable. A few days ago, the Redmond firm had indeed deployed a major update to Paint to Insiders. This made it possible, thanks to the magic of artificial intelligence, to cut out an image in one click… and therefore to generate a file incorporating transparency.

In recent months, Microsoft has increased initiatives aimed at making Paint more attractive to Windows users. After offering a major graphics overhaul to its utility, the Redmond firm plans to rely on its new generative AI tools to offer new capabilities to Paint. As proof, there are indications that Microsoft is about to introduce a module based on Bing Image Creator and thanks to which you can create visuals in Paint using a simple description.

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