Microsoft PowerPoint and the Apple iPad are equally ubiquitous. Unfortunately, getting these two to work together can be a chore. The iPad lacks the native capability to play PowerPoint presentations — an issue that can be a real pain for today’s mobile workforce. Fortunately, there are several workarounds that can help you bring PowerPoint and the iPad together.
At Digital Dazzle, our go-to solution is the SlideShark viewer. This handy (and free) app makes uploading and showing presentations a snap:
- Prepare your PowerPoint presentation. Simply create a SlideShark account and upload your presentation. On your iPad, log in to the app, then download your presentation.
- Ready, set, present. You can run the presentation from your iPad via AirPlay or the Apple HDMI adapter. Or you can use SlideShark’s presentation mode, which gives you added insight to your notes, a timer, and more.
Be forewarned: SlideShark doesn’t support complicated slide transitions, animations, or embedded video, so presentations that make heavy use of such features might not be the best candidates for this workaround.
If you want to stick with native Apple tools consider Keynote. Convert a PowerPoint file to a Keynote file, and you can use this app to play the presentation on the iPad, iPhone, or iPod. And because the app works with iCloud, your presentation is almost always available. The downside? Keynote removes animations, and embedded video will work only if it’s in a format that Apple devices support: H.264 MP4 or QuickTime MOV.
Of course, another option is simply to translate your entire presentation to video. As a bonus, you can upload video versions to YouTube, as long as they’re in a supported format such as MP4, FLV, AVI, or WMV. (See our blog post Two for One PowerPoint for more information about repurposing your PowerPoint presentations into videos.)