Google Drive update for Android brings PDF drawing & highlighting


Google Drive is gaining free-hand PDF annotation support on Android. You can use a stylus or finger to quickly draw on PDF files to highlight a text, image, or anything else. Once you install the latest update for the app (link below), opening a PDF will show a new pen FAB (floating action button) in the bottom-right corner of the screen. Tapping it brings up a new pill-shaped toolbar just above the bottom navigation bar.

This toolbar contains six buttons or tools. There’s a pen tool that you can use to draw on the PDF. It is available in four colors (red, black, blue, and green) and 8px to 40px of stroke width. Next, we have a highlighter in yellow, green, blue, or purple colors. This tool also offers the same range of stroke width and can be used to highlight text. An eraser tool lets you erase an entire stroke while you also get undo/redo buttons in case you incorrectly mark something. Lastly, you get a tool to hide all marks you’ve made on the PDF.

A “Save” button at the top-right of the screen lets you save any changes you make to a PDF file directly on it without creating a copy. But Drive also lets you save the changes as a copy from the overflow menu. This will leave the original file unmarked. By default, the toolbar containing these annotation tools opens at the bottom of your phone’s screen. But you can move it to the top. If you open Drive in landscape mode on tablets, the pill sits vertically on the right by default but can be moved to the left.

Free-hand PDF annotation is rolling out to Google Drive users on Android

Google announced the ability to draw and highlight PDFs on Drive’s Android app last month. The company didn’t tell when the new feature will be available to users. But 9to5Google recently spotted that version of the app brings the new annotation tools. The update isn’t available widely yet but it should just be a matter of time now. If you regularly use Drive, you might find these tools pretty handy. Unless you haven’t already installed the update, you can click the button below to download the latest version of the Drive app for Android from the Google Play Store. If no update is available for you, wait a few days and check again.



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