It is now possible to get all the functionality of PowerPoint on your iPad, allowing you to open, create or edit PowerPoint presentations without requiring file conversion. This means that you will now be able to make your presentations available on your iPad, which is very handy when you are constantly on the go. Let’s take a look at what PowerPoint for iPad has to offer and see if it really is the best solution for your presentation needs.
Getting PowerPoint for iPad
In order to get access to use the PowerPoint app in your iPad, you will need an Office 365 subscription. You can choose between Office 365 Home Premium, which costs $9.99 per month or Office 365 Personal for $6.99 per month. There are also some options suitable for business and the subscription gives you access to OneDrive, the cloud storage solution from Microsoft. This will enable you to transfer files from your Mac to your iPad or vice versa or set up a SharePoint location. OneDrive is the only cloud storage service supported.
With PowerPoint for iPad, you can access documents that have a .ppt file extension. However, if you want to edit it, you will be prompted to tap on a link to convert the file to a .pptx format. The interface has been designed to work well with iPad, ensuring that you can complete tasks easily and using a few taps. There are 20 themes that you can select to create a slideshow but they are different from the ones that you can find in the PowerPoint version for Mac and it is not possible to add new ones. There are also limited options when it comes to templates.
Layouts and design
You will find a good selection of options when it comes to the text of your presentation. You can choose from 20 text styles and change the font, size, colour and style, as well as adding bullet points or numbers with different designs. It is also possible to add tables and format them, as well as adding graphics. You can add frames, adjust size and shade of the images added and you can rotate them too. However, there is no option to crop them. Even though there is not a chart option included, you can add a chart created in Excel (if you use the version for iPad) and paste it to a slide in your presentation.
PowerPoint for iPad lacks in options to change elements on a slide. You will not be able to add or edit animations that are included in a slideshow that was not created on your iPad, even though you will be able to see them in a presentation. When you are creating a slideshow, you will not have the possibility of adding audio. Another issue is that while you can change the order of slides in a presentation you will not have an outline view. If you import a presentation from Mac or your PC, you will be able to see any comments added there but you will not have the option of editing, deleting them or adding new ones.
Another downside of PowerPoint for iPad is that when you play a presentation, you will not have presenter view, meaning that the slideshow will be shown in full screen. The thumbnail view and on-screen times are also missing. However, you get the option to touch and hold on a slide to highlight a particular area and you can add notes on the screen with a stylus pen. It is possible that Microsoft adds more features and makes improvements in future versions of PowerPoint for iPad. In the meantime, it can be said that while the app is useful it needs a lot of work until it can be the ideal solution for iPad users that need to work on presentations. There are other apps available such as Keynote, which at the moment are considerably better and offer a more comprehensive option.