Microsoft Word has provided a slider for zooming in and out of documents for many years, but keyboard shortcuts for zooming have never existed. This is finally altering.

Microsoft has announced that it is currently testing zoom keyboard shortcuts as part of the Microsoft 365 Insider programme (formerly the Office Insider program). As with most web browsers and the Word web application, pressing Ctrl and the minus key will zoom out, and pressing Ctrl and the plus key will zoom in. The Ctrl+0 keyboard shortcut returns the view to 100% zoom, and holding Control while scrolling the mouse wheel zooms in and out. These shortcuts will also function on Macs, but with the Command key instead of the Control key.

“In the case of keyboard shortcuts, the industry standard has diverged from Word’s initial implementation of these features,” the company explained in a blog post. Indeed, users anticipate that Ctrl + +/– will zoom in and out, so it can be frustrating when it does not. As a direct result of user feedback, the Word development team is updating keyboard shortcuts in response to this issue. Accessibility is a top priority for Word, and we aim to make zooming as smooth as possible.”

Microsoft is also developing a keyboard shortcut for Word that pastes text without formatting, similar to the now-standard Ctrl+Shift+V shortcut (Cmd+Shift+V on Mac), and the updated zoom controls are another step in this direction. There will also be options to revert to the previous behaviour, as the new zoom and paste shortcuts replace other actions previously assigned to those keys.

The new zoom options are accessible to Microsoft 365 Insiders running Word 16.0.15831.20174 or later on Windows and Word 16.67.1113.0 or later on macOS. Once any bugs are resolved, it should be made available to everyone.

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