Power tools for your presentation
The current technology trends are Cloud, Online, Work from Anywhere, Pay Per Use and so on. Presentation design applications imbibed all these trends are offering us moon.
In my previous post , I have covered some of them. Now, there are few more interesting tools. We don’t need to look at them as alternatives to PowerPoint or Keynote. They cater to a different need and different market. In fact, some products like Keynotopia significantly enhance the value of Keynote / PowerPoint. For easy understanding I am breaking this into different broad categories:
|1. Canva.com2. Sway.com
Although we have more than dozen products in the category, I am covering only the first two (not necessarily top two).
Canva is an all in one online design platform. You can design presentations, flyers, CD covers , Posters , Social Media Banners , Even invitations and so on.
This is what Mr. Guy Kawasaki Says about Canva: “Macintosh democratized computers; Google democratized information; and eBay democratized commerce. In the same way, Canva democratizes design”
While the free version offers basic functionality, you need to pay 12.95 USD per month to unlock its full power.
Sway is an offering from Microsoft. Given their scale , experience and most importantly their market share of PowerPoint, they could have easily taken this concept to a different league. It does not have integration with MS Office, Visual Studio or any other Microsoft suite of products. Overall, it is another lacklustre initiative from Microsoft.
Each of these products come with their advantages and disadvantages with the latter outnumbering the former. I guess these platforms are the in the evolution stage and will take some more time to mature and give a holistic offering.
Swipe.to deserves an honourable mention because of its minimalistic design concepts and useful collaboration features. This platform also features a mini HTML like coding to quickly design the slide. Their main slogan is “Focus on content and leave the rest to us”.
What to expect from an online presentation platform like this?
Customization : Offer Domain Driven Templates and not generic templates
Programming support : To come with API / integration abilities
Sharing Facility : Sharing and Tracking facilities like FTP file sharing services do
Protection : Offer Privacy and Security
Easy Tracking : Should provide an opportunity to profile and track viewers
Content Marketing : Offer marketing capabilities with analytics and tracking
Social Sharing : Simple Click and Share
Responsive Design : Should work on any device
Remote Control : Ability to control using Phone
Compatibility : Provision to import the existing power point/Key note content
Fonts : Support for Google Fonts
Driving Mode : Intent Driven rather than template driven
Unfortunately none of these tools offer complete functionalities listed above. While some tools have partial functionality some do not even come closer.
Hopefully, one day we will be able to see a more evolved platform. Despite the shortcomings, they are good start up options. I advise you to try some of those yourself.
Prototyping / Design Mock-ups bridge gap between developers and users and can potentially save lots of time , money and frustration. If you have an idea of how your business application or website should function, you should try these tools.
Keynotopia offers excellent templates / UI elements for rapid prototyping. You will be able to get off the block within thirty minutes. Try this out if you want to contribute to the application development process.
Keynotopia offers multiple PowerPoint presentations with UI elements specific to each platform. Ie you will get one presentation for iPhone 6 another for Android and one more for Windows and so on.
Unlike Keynotopia, this is a PowerPoint add-in that tightly integrates with PowerPoint itself. You will be able to use the UI elements like they way you use graphics from the picture library.
If you have ever used PowerPoint for training or designing e-learning courses, you will appreciate the functionality of Adobe Captivate. This is an interesting tool with PowerPoint UI + More and offers interactivity to the eLearning Courses.
A similar product in this class is Articulate Storyline. https://www.articulate.com. Both products provide one month of the trail. If you are in the e-Learning field or want to design training programs, you should try these out.