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Presentation Software Showdown: PowerPoint vs. Prezi

There are plenty of presentation software to choose from, but PowerPoint remains to be the top choice for most people. (Including you!) It’s been around since the 90s, and you’ve grown familiar with its classic and user-friendly interface. Still, you feel like trying something new for your next presentation, and you heard that Prezi is a great alternative.

Like PowerPoint, Prezi is a presentation software that allows you to create and design slideshows. But instead of the all-too-familiar templates and linear slide layouts, it gives you nifty animations and non-linear slide transitions.

You know that good presentation design can make a positive impact on audience participation. So, do you make the full transition to Prezi from PowerPoint? Before you decide, we’ve gone through some things you should know about these two presentation programs.

The Defending Presentation Software Champion: PowerPoint

PowerPoint vs Prezi

You might have come across the term “Death by PowerPoint”. You might have even experienced it yourself when you had to sit through a PowerPoint presentation that seemed to last for hours. But as we’ve made clear previously, this isn’t the fault of the software program.

If you learn the many tools and functions of PowerPoint, you’ll see why 500 million users patronize it. PowerPoint offers plenty of opportunity for you to be creative with your presentation design. You can customize templates, edit images, and use SmartArt graphics to easily present data.

The Presentation Software Underdog: Prezi

PowerPoint vs Prezi

When it comes to managing the content of your presentation, Prezi isn’t all that different from PowerPoint. You can easily add text, images, videos, and animations. What truly attracts users to this presentation software is the zooming animation.

Instead of asking you to work on a progression of slides, Prezi gives you a big canvas where you can layout different ideas. When viewing the finished product, your audience seamlessly flows from the bigger picture into the specifics of your presentation. This zooming action adds an interesting visual dimension.

Another upside to using Prezi is the fact that it’s a cloud-based program. You can make presentations as long as you have an internet connection.

The Verdict

Effective and engaging presentations are made by people, not the presentation software they choose to use. Whether you decide to use PowerPoint or Prezi depends on your content and who your audience is.

When Does PowerPoint win?
Make use of PowerPoint if you’re presenting a simple and linear story. It’s also useful if you’re going to add a lot of quantitative data in your presentations. Because of its more classic feel, it will work best for presentations in more formal settings, such as business meetings and academic lectures.

When Does Prezi Win?
Prezi is perfect for presentations that need to be visually engaging. Utilize its zooming animation to show how parts of your presentation correlate, and if you want to move freely from one part to another. Because its design is non-traditional, using Prezi is perfect for presentations in casual settings. However, you should also consider the fact that it makes use of animations that may cause motion sickness to some people.

Whatever you decide to choose between these 2 presentation software, just keep in mind that effective presentation design is up to you.

Featured Image: Angelo DeSantis via Flickr

Handy Dandy: PowerPoint, Keynote and Other Great Presentation Apps for the iPad

Sometimes, you’re going to have to prep for presentations without much notice. You might even have to do it while you’re on the go. When that happens, don’t panic. Don’t they always say that there’s an app for every problem?

In this case, there are plenty.

You can design great presentations as long as you have your iPad on hand. Here’s a quick rundown of some presentation apps available on iOS.

PowerPoint

powerpoint app

Let’s start with the classic: PowerPoint for iPad. This app is part of the recently released Office suite for the iPad. It’s the perfect choice for users who are used to running PowerPoint in the desktop, and would like to have the same experience in their choice of presentation apps. It has all the features you’ve grown accustomed to in a streamlined interface.

You can get it for free at the App Store, although you’ll have to subscribe to Office 365 to experience it in full. You can get Office 365 at different prices. It’ll be a good investment if you prefer using the MS Office programs.

CloudOn

cloudon app

If you’d rather skip on the Office 365 subscription, CloudOn is a great alternative.

Technically, it’s more than just a presentation app. It allows you to access MS Office files saved on your Dropbox or Google Drive. You can also create new PowerPoint, Word, or Excel files.

When making your slides, you’ll be taken to an interface that looks and works exactly like the desktop version of the classic PowerPoint 2010.

You can get CloudOn for free, although some features are only available as in-app purchases.

Keynote

keynote app

If you’re the proud owner of several Apple devices, Keynote is still your best bet. It allows you to sync your presentations through iCloud, meaning you can edit what you started on your Mac. Plus, it’s easy to use. Keynote takes full advantage of the swipe-and-slide technology that makes the iPad super convenient.

Keynote costs $9.99, but you can get it for free on any brand new iOS7 device.

Prezi

prezi app

Prezi is unlike most presentation apps. It offers a little more room for creativity. You can choose from 15 templates that are different from the usual slide title + bullet points layout. You can also use photos from your Camera Roll or take new pictures while you work.

Best of all, Prezi is free at the App Store.

Haiku Deck

haikudeck app

Similar to Prezi, Haiku Deck is another app that allows for plenty of creativity. It holds a huge collection of stock images and backgrounds that you can easily access through a search function.

Bonus: For the presentation itself, you can use your iPhone as a remote control or a mini teleprompter.

Haiku Deck is free, and you can buy extra photos in the App Store.