Microsoft Designer, the AI-powered tool for graphic design, is getting a new set of features to simplify how users create social media posts. The platform, which will be available directly from the Edge web-browser in the near future, has AI-powered tools that help it compete against rival graphic design services such as Canva.
Microsoft Designer, was first released in October of last year. It includes AI text to image features similar tools like Stable Diffusion. The tool allows users to generate images by using text prompts. They can then incorporate the results into invitations, social media posts, and greeting cards. Imagine it as a hybrid of DALLE with Adobe Express. Designer provides an easy way to create social media content, while editing the post.
Microsoft has now released a version for the Edge web browser. The Designer app is integrated into Edge’s sidebar, so users can work on a project, and then publish it directly to Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest, without having to switch to another window. It does not require you to download any extensions, and it will suggest things that you can include in your post while working.
Microsoft Designer now allows you to generate text using AI. The drop-down menu allows users to choose a goal (such as “increase bookings or sales” or “raise awareness”), and then type a brief description. The app will then generate a list of hashtags, captions, and fonts for social media posts. Microsoft Designer’s new feature, generative text, allows you to create a variety of captions and hashtags that can be used for social media posts.
Microsoft also makes it easier to resize designs, offering up to 20 different layout sizes for social media across Instagram, Facebook and LinkedIn. Text and images are automatically resized to fit new layouts. This should make it easier to fix formatting problems.
Users can also apply animated backgrounds and text transitions to their finished designs. Microsoft says vaguely that the feature is powered by AI, but does not specify if it generates animated assets from scratch. This could mean users will have to provide their own. We have reached out to Microsoft for clarification. If we receive a response, we will update the story.
The AI-powered tools to replace and expand images will be “coming soon”.
Designer will also be receiving future updates that will expand its AI-powered capabilities. The Fill tool allows users to quickly select an area in a design to place an object, while the Erase tool removes a person or an object and creates a new image. Expand Background fills in any gaps that may exist within your design’s foreground, while Replace Background replaces the background with a completely new image. Microsoft hasn’t shown how these features work in practice, so we don’t know what part AI plays. Microsoft has avoided saying any of these features would generate images from the ground up.
Microsoft Designer is currently in preview. There’s no release date for it yet. The waitlist is now removed so that anyone can access the software and compare it to competitors such as Canva or Adobe Express. Microsoft still has some catching-up to do. Canva and Adobe both released AI-powered features to make graphic design easier for novice users in the last few weeks.