Thank the heavens, you'll soon be able to add emojis to your Windows 11 screenshots

Windows 11 Snipping Tool with emoji
(Image credit: Future)

What you need to know

  • Microsoft may soon add several new features to the Windows 11 Snipping Tool.
  • Testing by the company shows the option to add emojis to screen captures through the upcoming shapes feature for the app.
  • The ability to detect QR codes within screenshots is also in the works.
  • Snipping Tool has become significantly more powerful in recent years, thanks to new options such as recording audio within video recordings, extracting text, and redacting sensitive information.

Windows 11's Snipping Tool could soon have some new features that will put a smile on your face, and into your screenshots. X user PhantomOfEarth shared details about new features that in testing by Microsoft for Snipping Tool, including the ability to add emojis to screen captures. Snipping Tool will also be able to detect QR codes in the near future, assuming testing goes well.

We already knew that shape support was on the way to Windows 11's Snipping Tool. Now we know that shapes feature will also allow you to add emojis to screen captures.

Emojis will add some playful options to Snipping Tool, since they make it easy to express a range of emotions. I suspect many will use Emojis playfully by adding eyeballs or fire emojis to images. That's certainly what I plan to do. Basic shapes will be more useful for how-to guides and instructing people, but some fun will be a welcome addition to the utility.

The ability to add emojis through Snipping Tool and the option to detect QR codes appear to be in A/B testing at this time. You may not see them on your PC, even if you're running an Insider build. PhantomOfEarth also mentioned an HDR screenshot color corrector that is not a hidden feature, suggesting that the other features mentioned on X are hidden at this time.

Microsoft's strange history with emojis

Satya Nadella with emojis

Microsoft has a surprisingly rich and controversial history related to emojis. (Image credit: Microsoft | Future)

Those who followed Emojigate will recognise the specific emojis that appear in the Snipping Tool video. They are the 3D emojis that were mysteriously absent from Windows 11 for years. The "controversy" lasted quite a while as users were unhappy that 3D emojis were not added to Windows 11 when expected. Experts weighed in, editorials were shared, and outrage was expressed online. Thankfully for 3D emoji lovers everywhere, Microsoft has since added 3D emojis to its operating system.

Now, those same 3D emojis are in testing within the Snipping Tool. Of course, we all thought those emojis would ship to Windows 11 long before they became generally available. Microsoft may want to add the emojis to the Windows 11 Snipping Tool as soon as possible to avoid outrage.

More than emojis

In addition to the playful addition of emoji support, Microsoft has other features in the works for Snipping Tool. PhantomOcean3 also shared a screenshot that included a button to detect QR codes. An HDR screenshot color corrector is also on the way and already available in version of the app.

Once a simple utility, Windows 11's Snipping Tool has grown in power and capability over the years. Last year, Microsoft added several features to the tool with the update to Windows 11 version 23H2. Following that update, Snipping Tool can extract text from an image or redact sensitive information within a screen capture. Microsoft also added support for recording audio when capturing a video recording.

Sean Endicott
News Writer and apps editor

Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at