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Presentation Software Definition and Examples

Presentation software brings complex ideas to life, one slide at a time

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Many software suites offer a program designed to accompany a speaker when he or she delivers a presentation. The specific presentation program in this suite of programs is usually (but not always) in the form of a slide show. This category of program is well-established; it doesn't change much, and it supports not only online visual display but also, generally, the printing of related handouts and speaker notes.

Benefits of Presentation Software

These programs make it simple and often fun to create a presentation for your audience. They contain a text editor to add your written content; they support charts and graphic images such as photographs, clip art or other objects to enliven your slideshow and get your point across crisply.

For a deeper dive into some of the leading applications in this software category, check out:

Other Forms of Presentation Software

PowerPoint and its clones work on a slide-based logic: When you move to the next point in your conversation, you advance to the next slide. An alternative model of presentations sets aside the slide model in favor of some other navigation system. Examples include:

Prezi offers a visual navigation tool that allows for zoom-in/zoom-out detail across a logical map of your presentation.

Microsoft Sway

Besides PowerPoint, Microsoft also offers Sway, which is a presentation and newsletter designer that supports simpler and more image-focused designs along a familiar linear flow path.

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Best Presentation Software of 2024

Table of Contents

  • Best Presentation Software
  • Things To Consider When Buying
  • How We Chose

Everyone has a message to share in some form. With presentation software, you can communicate that message a little easier and with more spark. If you don't have design and animation skills, don't worry; apps like Google Slides and Microsoft PowerPoint make it easy to craft a slideshow that helps people understand the concepts you're trying to convey.

Many of the apps in this buyers' guide are geared toward business presentations since that is often the primary use case. However, a few provide some slick tools for educators, entrepreneurs, community groups, and even family members to make a photo slideshow for a family reunion. Read on for the best presentation software available today.

  • Best Overall: Google Slides »
  • Most Compatible: Microsoft PowerPoint »
  • Best For Mac Users: Apple Keynote »
  • Most Flexible: Prezi »
  • Best Budget: Visme »
  • Best For Entrepreneurs: Slidebean »
  • Most Powerful: Canva »

Google Slides Logo

Best Overall: Google Slides

Highly integrated With Other Apps

Totally free

Not integrated with Microsoft products

Minimal support

When Google Slides debuted in 2006, it took the world by storm. That’s because it was integrated even back then with Gmail, Google Docs, and other popular Google apps many of us use in business, at school, and in our personal lives.

Google Slides is entirely free, and there are no hidden costs or upgrade plans. What’s surprising, though, about Google Slides is that it is a highly capable app for presentations – easy to use, with plenty of templates, fonts, animation options, and integrations.

Apart from that, the key feature here is real-time collaboration. Other users can join you as you create and edit slides. They can comment and make suggested changes, or simply start editing the slides on their own. (You can decide if other users can suggest changes or make them directly.) You also can view speaker notes on a laptop when you run the slideshow on an HDTV or projector. Google Slides integrates nicely into the online meeting app Google Meet, and it can open Microsoft PowerPoint files and export in that format as well.

Overall, Google Slides wins extra points because of how intuitive it is. There’s hardly any learning curve with the app, and since it runs in a browser window, everything you create and edit will be saved automatically. For business users, teachers, or just about anyone in a hurry to share a complex message, creating a Google Slides presentation is a snap – which is why it is our overall top pick.

Specifications:

  • Operating systems are supported: Windows, Mac, Web, iOS, Android, Linux
  • Number of templates and designs available: 23
  • Integrated apps: Adobe Creative Cloud, Dropbox, Box, LumApps
  • Collaboration features: Live editing, suggested edits
  • Multimedia supported: Photos, videos, audio, GIFs, and stickers
  • Export options: PDF, PowerPoint, Webpage, JPEG
  • Customer support options: Google Workspace only
  • Added features: Google Duet AI
  • Interface enhancements: Real-time editing and collaboration

Microsoft PowerPoint Logo

Most Compatible: Microsoft PowerPoint

Highly compatible

Online and desktop versions

Easy to use

No free version

Templates are not as trendy

Microsoft PowerPoint is the app you want for compatibility with other apps and programs. Released in 1990, this presentation app is well-known in business circles and runs on just about any computer in the world. Because it’s so compatible, you will likely not have any trouble running the app on your phone or a tablet, in a browser, or even on seriously outdated PC laptops and desktops.

While apps like Prezi add slick animations and transitions that make a presentation come to life, PowerPoint is more like a trusted business partner; it works on just about any computer, the interface is well-known and straightforward, and it’s likely that everyone you know and collaborate with is already familiar with the app. Every other presentation app we reviewed also supports PowerPoint in terms of directly opening or importing the file, and exporting as a PowerPoint file.

You'll need a Microsoft 365 Personal Edition subscription to use PowerPoint. It may be an app that’s already installed and included with a new computer, at least for a trial period.

  • Operating systems are supported: Windows, Mac, Web, iOS, Android
  • Integrated apps: Adobe PDF, Shutterstock, YouTube, and many others
  • Multimedia supported: Photos, videos, audio
  • Export options: PowerPoint, XML, PDF, JPEG, and many more
  • Customer support options: Personal or business support
  • Added features: Integrated live camera, Microsoft Teams integration
  • Interface enhancements: Microsoft Copilot, speaker coach

Apple Keynote Logo

Best For Mac Users: Apple Keynote

Exceptional designs

Desktop only

Graphic designers love Apple Keynote, mostly because the included templates and design options are so stellar. Your presentation will really come to life, helping you communicate about even complex subjects with flair and a trendy look.

Using the app feels a bit like you're the late Steve Jobs creating an award-winning presentation that will grab an audience. Jobs had a way of captivating those in the audience, and Keynote helps you do that with some of the best presentation templates around. For example, there are 40 templates to choose from, many of them full of color and using the trendiest fonts. Keynote also includes 100 transitions and animations to liven up a presentation. The app also includes 700 different shapes and icons that will help you enhance your slides.

Apple Keynote is powerful enough for any user, but it’s important to know the limitations. For starters, Keynote only runs on Mac computers. That makes it less compatible with Google Slides or Microsoft PowerPoint. You can export the presentation from Keynote as a PowerPoint file, which is fine, but it means no one can edit the Keynote slides directly; they will have to use PowerPoint.

Keynote also only runs as a desktop app. That means you won’t benefit from the live editing and commenting features of Google Slides, where you can collaborate with anyone in real time on the same file. Instead, Keynote is more static, as slideshows can't be edited as a group in a browser window. It’s still incredibly powerful and intuitive but with a few key downsides.

  • Operating systems are supported: Mac, iOS
  • Number of templates and designs available: 50
  • Integrated apps: FaceTime, WebEx, Zoom, iCloud
  • Collaboration features: Collaborate through iCloud
  • Multimedia supported: Video, audio, images, 3D objects, stickers
  • Export options: PDF, PowerPoint, Movies, animated GIFs, images
  • Customer support options: Online help, support communities
  • Added features: Cinematic transitions, Keynote Remote on iPhone
  • Interface enhancements: Inspectors help with formatting

Prezi Logo

Most Flexible: Prezi

Unique concept

Trendy visuals

Unique design templates

Harder to learn

There’s something very compelling about Prezi, the presentation app that provides the most flexibility in terms of the message you are communicating. For starters, this is an app that knows it’s all about the message, whether you're an educator, business owner, entrepreneur, or even a scientist or engineer. Instead of a slideshow, you create a “canvas” with topics and subtopics. Think of it as a way to augment what you are saying with animated annotations, swoosh effects, and charts.

Prezi is the best at guiding you to the most powerful design features and giving you the tools to make even a complex subject more interesting and easier to understand. Part of this extreme flexibility has to do with how you're not creating slides at all, but enhancing a topic. Another way to think of Prezi is more like an animated whiteboard; when you show a presentation, it can come to life as you speak through a webcam.

All of this flexibility means you aren't limited to a boring slideshow, although there may be times when you are asked to make a slideshow and nothing more. For example, a school assignment or a boss might dictate that you need to create basic slides, not an animated whiteboard session. This is where you have to decide if Prezi matches the goals of the message you are communicating about.

  • Pricing options and plans: Standard ($7/month), Plus ($15/month), Premium ($19/month)
  • Operating systems are supported: Windows, Mac, Linux
  • Number of templates and designs available: 210+
  • Integrated apps: Google Drive, Slack, Canva, Zoom
  • Collaboration features: Real-time editing, comments
  • Multimedia supported: Photos, icons, video, GIF
  • Export options: PNG, JPG, PDF, GIF, and MP4.
  • Customer support options: Knowledgebase, online support
  • Added features: Offline mode, analytics
  • Interface enhancements: Broadcast link, tool tips

Best Budget: Visme

Free version available

Added visual tools

Good overall value

It takes more time to learn

Expensive pro plans

Visme is the best budget option because there is a free version that still provides many of the features you might need. It’s also a good value, because (similar to Canva) you can access all of the graphic design features to create infographics, brochures, logos, and rich documents all without paying for the premium version.

Even more important, Visme is a good value if you do choose the Starter or Pro plans because you can then unlock advanced features you might only find in Adobe Visual products. For example, at the Pro level, you can create an entire brand kit for a company including logos, brochures, and flyers that all have the same look.

While it's called an all-in-one marketing design platform and has hints of Canva, the first tool you would likely use is for creating presentations (e.g., It's the most prominent tool listed on their site). Because everything is geared more toward marketing and sales, Visme templates emphasize things like growth metrics, charts, and bullet points used to explain a product or service. Visme is also meant more for a group of business users. You can collaborate in real-time, leave comments on presentations, and even follow a workflow to mark presentation tasks as in progress or done.

Like Canva, because the Visme app is part of a suite of visual design products, it might take a little more time to learn all of the added tools. The presentation tool is just one of many included, even if this tool alone is easy to learn.

Visme is an extensive product with an upgrade path that unlocks more templates, customer support, and more supported file formats. Overall, it’s a good value because you can still create presentations without having to pay extra.

  • Operating systems are supported: Mac, PC, iOS, Android
  • Number of templates and designs available: 13,000
  • Integrated apps: Google Drive, Vimeo, Dropbox, Survey Monkey, and many more
  • Collaboration features: Real-time collaboration, assign tasks
  • Multimedia supported: Photos, videos, audio, GIFs, 3D graphics
  • Export options: JPEG, PNG, PDF, MP4, GIF, PPTX, HTML5
  • Customer support options: Email, chat, in-app
  • Added features: AI features, forms
  • Interface enhancements: Tool tips, video training

Slidebean Logo

Best For Entrepreneurs: Slidebean

Design for entrepreneurs and salespeople

Unique features

Not as powerful as some

Not as well-known

Most presentation software is flexible and powerful enough for any message and for any purpose. However, Slidebean focuses on a more narrow segment. The app is designed to create a “pitch deck,” which is something an entrepreneur or salesperson uses to pitch a product.

For example, let’s say your company sells a new widget. Using Slidebean, you can explain the features and benefits, include a slide about pricing, and use the tools that are intended more for selling a concept than perhaps merely explaining it.

Once you finish creating the pitch deck, you can share it as a link for others to view. You can then measure how much time people spend viewing the slides, including time spent on specific slides in the presentation. Another major differentiator with Slidebean is that you can work with professional designers and writers (for a fee, of course) who will create the pitch desk and write all of the copy for you.

  • Operating systems are supported: Windows and Mac browsers
  • Number of templates and designs available: 160
  • Integrated apps: None
  • Collaboration features: Editing (not simultaneous), sharing
  • Multimedia supported: Images, icons, GIFs
  • Export options: PPT, PDF, and HTML
  • Customer support options: Knowledgebase
  • Added features: Consult with experts, finance templates
  • Interface enhancements: Startup video lessons

Canva Logo

Most Powerful: Canva

Thousand of templates

Integrates with other Canva tools

Limited export options

Known as an “online graphical design platform” for everyday users, Canva provides plenty of tools for creating logos, brochures, postcards, and presentations.

Because these tools are all integrated, Canva is powerful enough for any message you want to communicate. It’s ideal for business, personal use, and schools. If you decide to build a presentation, you can also incorporate logos, fonts, clip art, and animations that are built into Canva. It means the palette for creating a presentation is more flexible because all of the other design tools are right at your fingertips. Let’s say you want to create a pitch deck about a new startup. You can create the logo, choose the colors and fonts, and then create the slideshow. Most presentation apps in our buyers' guide other than Visme don’t provide this level of flexibility and power in one online app.

Canva lets you run the presentation from within Canva itself, or you can export the slides and use them in Microsoft PowerPoint. There are thousands of templates available. Once you select a look and feel for your presentation, you can pivot and use those same graphics, fonts, and designs in a brochure or other material.

With all of this power in terms of visual design software comes a slight learning curve. Canva is intuitive and the interface is well-designed, but there are so many tools available that it takes some time to learn them all.

  • Operating systems are supported: PC, Mac, iOS, Android, browser
  • Number of templates and designs available: Thousands
  • Integrated apps: Google Drive, Dropbox, Slack, HubSpot, and many more
  • Collaboration features: Real-time editing, whiteboards
  • Multimedia supported : Photos, icons, graphics, data visualizations, media elements
  • Export options: PDF, JPG, PNG, PPTX, MP4
  • Customer support options: Email
  • Added features: Magic Switch, Magic Write, Magic Animate
  • Interface enhancements: Search for designs, generate with Magic Design

The Bottom Line

If you're short on time and just need to create a presentation without a lot of hassle, Google Slides is the app for you. It’s completely free without any trial versions of “pro” upgrades, yet it's also quite powerful and intuitive to learn. Google Slides is also our top pick because it integrates into other Google apps like Gmail and Google Docs, is widely used and highly compatible, and still gets the job done when the main goal is to finish a slideshow and share your message.

Things To Consider When Buying Presentation Software

Features and functionality: When it comes to presentation software, it’s all about the templates. As you are considering which app to use, it’s a good idea to evaluate which templates are available and if they meet your needs. We’ve also noted how many templates are included with each app. Beyond that, look for the supported file formats since that will determine who can use and open the presentation. Collaboration features are also important, making it easier to work on a presentation within a group and make comments for everyone to see.

Ease of use and user interface: Creating a presentation shouldn't feel cumbersome. When you start the app, it should be easy to create the first slide from a template, add more slides, fill in the text and images, and finish the entire project without having to learn complex features. Apple Keynote is a good example of an app that's intuitive at first, and then you can always explore more advanced features later on.

Compatibility with different file formats: The most well-known presentation app is Microsoft PowerPoint. So it’s important that the app you choose supports the popular PowerPoint format. Beyond that, look for software that also supports PDF files in case you want a printed version of your slideshow or to share it online.

Collaboration and sharing capabilities: With presentation software, being able to work on a slideshow with a group of people all at the same time can be a time-saver but also produce better results. It should also be easy to leave comments for others to review. Once you're done with the presentation, it should also be easy to share the file or an online version of the presentation with others.

Customization options for design and branding: Visme and Canva allow you to customize the graphics and even make logos and experiment with a variety of fonts. All presentation apps provide ways to edit graphics, resize photos, and even incorporate video into your slideshow. Not every app makes it as easy to edit graphics as Google Slides does, however.

Availability of templates and pre-designed layouts: As with many software programs, templates save time and effort. An app like Microsoft PowerPoint includes pre-designed templates and graphics you can use to enhance a slideshow. Visme is a good example of an app with extensive templates (it has thousands built-in). While Apple Keynote doesn't have as many templates, the ones that are included tend to be more well-designed and trendy.

Pricing and licensing: Most presentation apps offer a monthly subscription to help you get started making a slideshow. In some cases, such as Visme and Slidebean, there’s a basic free version to help you experiment with the app right away. Only Google Slides is entirely free with no extra pricing options. Microsoft also offers a fully licensed version of PowerPoint as opposed to paying for a monthly subscription. The full licensed version costs $159.99.

Customer support and training resources: Microsoft is arguably one of the best companies to choose if you're interested in customer support. Because the product costs a little more – especially if you purchase the full licensed version – it includes extensive technical support. That said, even though Google Slides is free and customer support can be hit or miss, there are so many people using that product that you can usually find answers to questions by doing a simple Google search or asking on public support forums. Also, training videos are more readily available for Google Slides and Microsoft PowerPoint because they're both so popular.

Integration with other software and tools: Integration is key when it comes to presentation software because you want to be able to access important graphics, photos, and videos easily. Canva is perhaps the most integrated option for that reason alone. It's a graphics platform for creating graphics and other design materials, so when you make a presentation, you can easily find what you need.

Security and privacy features: Security and privacy might not be the first concern when it comes to presentation software, since you might be making a simple how-to for employee orientation or a photo slideshow of your vacation. However, for a business creating a new product or for a new startup that has not launched yet, be sure there is a way to protect your presentation from prying eyes.

How We Chose The Best Presentation Software

Our contributor John Brandon poured over specifications and features for the best presentation software around. He’s used presentation apps since the debut of Microsoft PowerPoint and Google Slides. He also consulted with business owners who have started companies and need to communicate about their firms. This includes David Ciccarelli, an entrepreneur who started a company called Voices (an audio and video tech startup) and is the CEO of Lake , a vacation rental business. He also tapped Stephen Gagnon, a web designer with the search engine optimization company Web Scour , who has visual design and branding experience.

WHY SHOULD YOU TRUST US?

John Brandon worked in the corporate world for 10 years, often creating presentations for large teams and at corporate functions. He worked as an Information Design Director at Best Buy Corporation. Since then, he has tested and reviewed thousands of tech products including presentation apps, Wi-Fi routers, televisions, office products, and everything in between. His writing has appeared in Wired magazine, Inc. magazine, FoxNews.com, LAPTOP magazine, and many others.

For anyone who wants to communicate about a new product or service, help new employees with onboarding, or even share photos from a recent vacation, presentation software helps you communicate visually. The basic idea is that you can create a slideshow that augments and enhances what you have to say.

Presentation software is designed to help you communicate a message to an audience, either in a classroom, a conference room, or at home. You create a slideshow, insert graphics, photos, and videos, and then run the slideshow full-screen. When you run the presentation, you can click the mouse button or press the arrow keys on a computer to go back and forth in the slideshow.

Most modern presentation apps charge a monthly fee, usually around $8 or $12 per month. Google Slides is the exception to this rule since it is entirely free. Typically, with higher costs for the pro and premium plans, you gain access to more templates, more graphics, and the ability to export in more file formats, such as HTML or video files. At the high end, Microsoft PowerPoint also offers a fully licensed version, as opposed to a monthly charge.

The classic, tried-and-true presentation apps like Microsoft PowerPoint and Apple Keynote are available as a desktop version you install. In most cases, you will sign up for the app and then download the installation file and run that installer. However, more modern apps like Google Slides and Canva run in a browser window and don't require any installation.

PowerPoint is sometimes included on a Windows laptop. However, if you're looking for a fresh start with new templates and features for animation and video that go beyond PowerPoint and Keynote, you might consider upgrading. Also, presentation tools are now included in apps like Canva and Visme, making them more integrated.

U.S. News 360 Reviews takes an unbiased approach to our recommendations. When you use our links to buy products, we may earn a commission but that in no way affects our editorial independence.

What is Presentation Software Anyway? A Complete Guide to Essential Features and Why Your Team Needs Them

What is Presentation Software Anyway? A Complete Guide to Essential Features and Why Your Team Needs Them

It’s estimated that 30 million PowerPoint presentations are created on any given day— and those numbers have likely spiked even higher given our new norm of virtual communication and remote work. Between startup pitches, business plans, all-hands meetings, and school presentations, everyone has a different story to tell. Regardless of who you are and what you do, we’d be willing to bet that you’ve created a deck or two in your day. But having a handful of presentations under your belt doesn’t necessarily mean you’re an expert. 

In fact, it’s very likely that the majority of those presentations created on a daily basis are cobbled together the night before the deadline. The result? A poorly executed deck (or frankendeck, as we like to call them) that doesn’t support your overarching purpose. In fact, 79% of people think that most presentations today suck. Your content means nothing if it gets lost in transition, and a bad deck can derail your entire presentation in the blink of an eye. Luckily, presentation software can help you create something brilliant in a fraction of the time— with no design experience required. 

Sounds great, right? But what is presentation software , anyway? Let us tell you. 

What is presentation software?

Presentation software is the deck designer you’ve been looking for, without actually having to hire a designer. At its core it’s a platform or software that enables you to create visual presentations. Everyone knows the household names like PowerPoint , Keynote , and Google Slides , but there are plenty of PowerPoint alternatives out there making presentation design simpler and more innovative. Alternative software, like Beautiful.ai, offers unique features that are not available in the dated software like PowerPoint. 

What features should you look for?

Depending on whether you work for a small business, startup or larger enterprise, finding a good presentation software program is a must. There are many different softwares to choose from, but these are the key features that you should consider when choosing your app or platform. 

A lot of inexperienced designers might dread starting a presentation from scratch (can you blame them?). A big selling point for a lot of PowerPoint alternatives is that they offer pre-built templates to help get you started. But even still, presentation design can be a big undertaking if you don’t know how to structure your story. Beautiful.ai offers a free gallery of pre-built presentation templates by our resident designer to help you start inspired. Each template is fully customizable so you can make it your own, while using our layouts to spark your own creativity.

If you’re not a designer by trade, a presentation software with artificial intelligence is smart (literally, and figuratively). Beautiful.ai’s smart slides take on the burden of design for you so that you can focus on what’s really important: your message. With smart slide templates , we apply principles of good design to each slide restraint so that it’s nearly impossible to create something that doesn’t look good. Simply add your content and watch the slides adjust without having to worry about aligning text boxes, configuring charts, or resizing text. 

Some presentation softwares do animations better than others (no, we aren’t going to name any names). Your animations should be subtle, but effective. The last thing you want is your animations to give the audience motion sickness. But when done correctly, dynamic animations build in a way that directs the audience’s attention back to your slides.

We may be biased, but Beautiful.ai’s animations bring your slides to life without overwhelming viewers. We give you the power to decide how your animations will build on each slide. You control the speed, the order, and whether they build automatically or advance with a click. You can create a custom timeline, which is a manual control of your animation build. And you can also customize the animation timing and style to choose overlapping, simultaneous, sequential, or no animation at all. Depending on your content, and talking points, you may select a slow, normal, or fast animation speed— it’s all up to you. 

Collaboration

We can all agree that working in the cloud is better than working without it. Eliminating lengthy email chains and attachments from your workflow can save a lot of time. Especially when you’re working in tandem with colleagues or clients, the cloud ensures that you are always working in the most updated version. Collaborating in presentations means that you can work on building a deck in unison with your team, which is something that’s critical in a work-from-home environment. 

With Beautiful.ai, not only can you collaborate with teammates— internal and external— in real-time, but you can also comment on slides to provide feedback or questions. Each collaborator on the presentation will receive a notification via email and within the product when a comment or edit is made on the slide so nothing falls through the cracks. 

Shareability

Shareability is something that older presentation software— like PowerPoint— lacks. Instead of having to send a file attachment with every update, newer presentation software will allow links for simplified sharing. This also helps teams with version history and content management. 

In Beautiful.ai, it’s easy to share your link out via email, social media, or embed it on a webpage. Because everything is saved on the cloud, you can edit your presentations on the fly and it will be updated immediately without having to resend a new link to your colleagues or clients. This is a game changer for board meetings, pitches, or sales proposals when a piece of information might come in at the last minute but you have already sent a link out to the deck.

Analytics is an essential tool for any business. With analytics you can see which slides performed well, and which slides your audience skipped altogether. This allows you to evaluate which information is resonating well with your audience and what might be getting lost in transition. As a business, this can help you understand your final call-to-action, and how you need to pivot to encourage a more favorable outcome. 

Beautiful.ai’s analytics shows you time spent on the presentation, total views, when the presentation was last viewed, and completion rate all within the product. 

Jordan Turner

Jordan Turner

Jordan is a Bay Area writer, social media manager, and content strategist.

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The 11 Best Presentation Software to Use in 2023

best presentation software to use in 2021, presentation software list

The ability to effectively share ideas, illustrate a concept, and convince an audience is invaluable whether you’re a student or a C-level executive. These days, the presentation software you use to create presentations is just as important as your public-speaking skills.

On top of that, most companies have transitioned to remote work recently due to the current coronavirus situation, and now need to share their stories online through a virtual conference room with their distributed teams and external audience members.

That’s why we’ve come up with a list of some of the best presentation software available right now, so you can choose a compatible and innovative presentation maker that includes the best presentation tools to suit your specific needs.

Choose the best presentation software by weighing the pros and cons

You’ll see some of the most popular presentation apps: from free to paid subscription platforms, and slideshow applications to full-blown visual design presentation software with interactive features and more.

Each presentation software has its pros and cons, so it’s up to you to figure out which suits your needs best; consider the software learning curve, whether your company is made up of Mac users or Windows users and the software compatibility, if you need an enterprise account or free account, etc.

Let’s dive in!

1. Piktochart

presentation software piktochart, best presentation software

Piktochart is a presentation software that can create a variety of design visuals, from infographics to social media stories.

An area in which Piktochart shines is crafting unique presentations. 

On Piktochart, users can choose from a wide range of professionally-designed presentation templates .

These custom templates include everything from monthly marketing reports to employee onboarding templates.

This broad selection of customizable templates is especially useful for those who don’t have much design experience or know-how but need to create a visually stunning unique presentation in a pinch. 

Piktochart’s presentation maker also makes it easy to edit presentations and include design elements such as lists, timelines, comparisons, graphs, and different types of charts through drag-and-drop tools.

You can even make visual maps and interactive charts to keep your audience engaged throughout your presentation. 

And if your company uses a Piktochart TEAM plan , you can enjoy the platform’s ability to store brand assets , color schemes, and bespoke templates. Here, replicating company-branded visuals is a breeze. 

Piktochart comes with a free version but with certain limitations. Active visuals are capped at five per month and published visuals have a Piktochart watermark.

If you want features such as team template collaboration, project sharing, and annotated commenting, you’ll have to get a Team account. To sum it up:

  • Lots of professionally-designed templates 
  • Good for both design professionals and non-professionals 
  • Easy to store brand assets and bespoke templates for future presentations
  • Access presentation tools from anywhere via a web browser
  • Free presentation app version available
  • Might take some getting used to if you’re used to PowerPoint presentations

2. Microsoft PowerPoint

microsoft powerpoint, powerpoint presentation

Microsoft PowerPoint is often the first presentation software that comes to mind.

Once considered the “O.G.” and best presentation software available, it is still widely used and has a familiar interface—which means most users are comfortable with it. 

This presentation app has everything you need to create a presentation: from animated transitions for interactive presentations to pre-installed fonts and graphic elements.

Users can also upload their own fonts, graphics, and images into their finished presentation.

Lastly, it’s available as part of the Microsoft Office software package; and you can work on your presentations via the web and mobile devices, for offline viewing as well as online. 

However, PowerPoint is no longer considered the best presentation software, as it has very few templates to choose from, and these tend to fall quite flat compared to modern apps and software.

It’s easy to fall back into boring slideshow PowerPoint files if you don’t know what you’re doing.

And because most people use PowerPoint, you’re likely using the same template as the next guy. 

As standalone presentation software, PowerPoint is pricey at US$139.99—and accessible through only one device unless you upgrade your package.

And while PowerPoint is primarily a slideshow application and presentation maker, its strengths are limited to this category. 

So if you’re looking for the best presentation software, and bang for your buck for a robust presentation tool, you might want to look elsewhere. 

  • Market leader in slideshow applications to create slides
  • Widely used and familiar interface for the presentation process
  • Reliable and usable on most devices as well as being a desktop app
  • Flat templates
  • Limitations with its standalone-presentation software price

3. Google Slides

google slides, presentation software example

Google Slides is a slideshow application that is very similar to PowerPoint.  But there are three main differences: it’s fully online (while also allowing for offline viewing), collaborative, and free. 

The great thing about Google Slides (besides the fact that it’s completely free for anyone with a Google account) is that you can log on via your browser or through its official app. 

You can access all Google Slides presentations from any device (mobile, tablet, and desktop), and share them with other people so you can collaborate in real-time. 

Google Drive allows all your presentations to live on the cloud, accessible to all marketing and sales teams, with unparalleled ease of use.

And there’s no need to worry about disruptions as all changes are saved as they happen, as long as you have an active internet connection. 

Additionally, anyone familiar with PowerPoint will be comfortable using Google’s iteration and likely be delighted by Google Drive and the slide library available. 

It’s also a lot simpler, so even those new to presentation-making will find it easy to navigate. 

However, some might find Google Slides too simple as it lacks the wealth of features available on PowerPoint. 

These include embedding videos from sources other than YouTube, plus adding audio tracks and sound effects, limiting the ability to create unique interactive presentations. 

Some users also encounter issues with downloading and exporting to different formats, including PowerPoint. 

Some slides may even turn out completely different from the original version. 

All in all, Google Slides is a great option for those who are looking for a free application and only need to create simple presentations. 

  • The free plan supports professional presentations
  • Web-based and collaborative to create presentations
  • Simple and familiar interface for an online presentation software
  • Too simple for advanced presentation making
  • Difficult to export to other formats
  • Limited templates and customization options for interactive content

keynote, keynote presentations

You could say Keynote is Apple’s version of PowerPoint. It’s also a slideshow application—but in typical Apple fashion, it comes with a sleek, minimalist interface and is considered one of the best presentation apps on the market. 

There are 30 different themes to choose from, which serve as templates for those who need a quick fix. And it can do most of what PowerPoint can. 

Keynote’s main perk is that it’s part of the Apple ecosystem. 

That means it has built-in iCloud and Apple Watch support so users can control their presentation from their mobile device or even their wrists with just a click. 

This presentation app comes pre-installed on most Mac devices. Otherwise, you can purchase it from the Apple store for just US$9.99 for mobile and US$19.99 for OS X. 

The big downside is that Keynote is exclusive to Mac OS. 

Non-Apple users can create, upload, and sync their own Keynote presentations through their iCloud Drive, but this presentation app is only truly helpful only for those who use multiple Apple devices. 

And if you’re used to working on PowerPoint, you might find Keynote a bit confusing in the beginning, especially when editing presentations. 

  • Sleek, minimalist interface 
  • Free with most Apple devices
  • No access for PC and Android devices except through iCloud

5. SlideDog

Sliding away from straightforward slideshow applications and other presentation apps, SlideDog is a web-based multimedia presentation tool that lets users combine different types of media to create and edit presentations. 

This includes everything from PowerPoint decks to videos and even PDFs that can all be played side by side without any awkward transitions. 

It’s also extremely easy to customize a SlideDog presentation. 

You just need to upload the files into the SlideDog web browser application, and then drag and drop them according to the order in which you want them to play. 

You can control your presentations and playlists from another device, and audience members can view your slideshow on their devices by clicking a link. 

SlideDog has a free presentation app version that provides all of the basic features. 

However, live sharing and premium support are only available with a Pro account that costs US$99 per year, and not via the free version alone.

While SlideDog is technically considered presentation software, you can’t actually create presentations on it. 

You can simply stitch together different pre-made presentations in various formats into what is essentially a playlist. 

Lastly, SlideDog supports only Windows devices, so Apple and Linux users can’t use it. 

  • Supports a lot of different media
  • Provides live-sharing
  • More dynamic compared to the usual slideshow presentation
  • Only collates media; doesn’t create them

6. Haiku Deck 

haiku deck, presentation software example

Ever come across presentations with size-eight fonts and blocks of indecipherable paragraphs on each slide? 

You can avoid such an unfortunate scenario with Haiku Deck. 

HaikuDeck is a web and mobile application that favors images over text. 

It works by limiting the number of words users can put on each slide, and allowing them to search for images on their platform related to the slide’s main idea. 

This makes it ideal for those who want to simplify their thoughts and let the images do all the talking. 

Users have over 40 million royalty-free photos to choose from, plus dozens of simple slide layouts on the platform itself. 

While this certainly simplifies the process of creating a visually rich presentation, it can be limiting for those who need to include more information into their slides. 

It’s a great option for someone giving a TED Talk, for example.

But for others who need to pass on more facts and figures, having a built-in word limit might be too restrictive.  

  • Simple and easy to use 
  • Access to millions of royalty-free stock images
  • May be too simple for some
  • No Android support
  • Limited features

7. Prezi Business

prezi business, business presentation software

Among the other presentation software on this list, Prezi Business might be one of the most unique presentation tools. 

Rather than offering a regular slideshow format, Prezi looks more like a 3D interactive mind map where viewers jump dynamically from one idea to the next. 

You can zoom in on one “slide” and then zoom out for the next. 

Prezi has over 100 templates to choose from and comes with a very simple interface and a drag-and-drop style of editing. 

It’s compatible with both Mac and PC desktops as well as smartphones. 

It’s also similar to a regular PowerPoint deck in that you can jump back and forth from one “slide” to the next. 

And like SlideDog, you can send viewers the link to the presentation as you’re presenting. 

Also, up to 10 people can work on a Prezi presentation at the same time, one of its main selling points. 

This is great for collaboration, but having so many hands-on deck at once can get messy. 

  • Dynamic and immersive presentations
  • Highly visual
  • Easy to use
  • May not be appropriate for all types of presentations

screenshot of ludus presentation software

In a world of slides and presentations, standing out is the key. Ludus brings the flair of graphic design into the world of presentations.

At its core, Ludus is the bridge between presentation tools and design software. It enables users to infuse their slides with the kind of design elements you’d typically find in advanced design platforms.

Not only can you import assets from design giants like Adobe, but its seamless integration with tools like Unsplash and Giphy makes sourcing visuals a breeze.

It’s a fairly affordable tool for all its features compared to the other paid options in this list, as users pay 12.49 euros monthly (if billed annually).

However, while Ludus’ robust design capabilities can elevate the look of your presentation, those unfamiliar with design tools might find there’s a learning curve.

  • Merges presentation creation with advanced design tools.
  • Seamless integration with popular design platforms and visual databases.
  • Offers a unique edge in presentation aesthetics.
  • Might be a tad overwhelming for non-designers
  • Can have a steeper learning curve for those used to more straightforward platforms

9. Slidebean

screenshot of slidebean presentation software

Crafting a compelling presentation demands not only compelling content but also a design that can captivate your audience. Enter Slidebean.

Slidebean offers an intelligent design solution, using AI to transform raw content into professionally styled presentations. This platform streamlines the design process, allowing you to focus on the message rather than fretting over aesthetics.

The basic plan is free and allows you to create a presentation. But if you want to share or download your presentations, as well as unlock the full suite of features, you’ll need to sign up for the All-Access plan priced at $199 per year.

While it provides a quick and efficient method to produce polished slides, it also offers features for sharing, collaboration, and viewer analytics, adding an edge to your presentation strategy.

However, for professionals who prioritize granular design control, the automated design might feel limiting at times.

  • AI-driven design ensures visually appealing presentations.
  • Features for collaboration and viewer insights.
  • Efficient design process reduces time and effort.
  • Might not offer the detailed design customization some users desire.
  • Automated choices may not always align with specific branding or style preferences.

10. ClearSlide

screenshot of clearslide presentation software

Having great visuals to drive your point home can be the difference between getting a sale across the line or customers walking away. ClearSlide stands out in this area as a presentation tool for businesses laser-focused on boosting their sales and marketing game.

At its core, ClearSlide is all about leveling up business presentations. Whether you’re marketing a new product or tracking client engagement, it’s got tools that cater to every need.

Whether it’s a PowerPoint, a PDF, or something from Google Drive or Dropbox, ClearSlide makes it simple to upload and work with these files.

The unique edge? ClearSlide’s virtual meeting space pops open with just a click. It’s all about seamless, professional presentations without the hassle.

Beyond just slides, the platform dives deep into metrics and analytics, ensuring every presentation is backed by data-driven insights. And the tool is available for $35 per month, which isn’t too pricey for medium-sized businesses.

However, its complexity isn’t for everyone. For some, the variety of features might seem a tad overwhelming, and its focus on metrics might be a bit much for those just wanting a basic presentation tool.

  • Seamless virtual meetings and presentations
  • Integrates with popular platforms
  • Offers insightful analytics for sales and marketing
  • Might feel complex for some users
  • Limited transition and design effects
  • Mobile experience could be better

screenshot of vyond presentation software

Stepping into the world of animation, Vyond, once known as GoAnimate, allows users to turn their narratives into professional animated videos. For those looking to elevate their content without diving deep into animation complexities, Vyond can be the go-to tool.

This platform is more than just drag-and-drop animations. It integrates AI capabilities with Vyond Go, which transforms text prompts into rough-cut videos.

Fancy a quick draft for your upcoming project? This AI assistant is up for the task. And if perfection is your game, take it to Vyond Studio, filled with an array of characters, templates, and backgrounds.

The Essential Plan at $25 per month is suitable for individuals on a budget. However, if you want to export videos at 1080p and above, have collaboration tools, or different export options, you’ll need to sign up for the Professional Plan at $92 per month.

As robust as the tool is, there are still some kinks to iron out. AI voiceovers might still need some tweaks, and detailed color customizations can be a bit tricky, but the tool’s strengths, especially for businesses, are undeniable.

  • Hassle-free video creation for beginners to experts
  • Generous library of pre-made assets
  • AI-powered video and script creation with Vyond Go
  • AI voiceovers might feel a bit robotic
  • Some customization limitations for specific props and scenes

The best presentation software is…

 …completely up to you! 

When it comes to presentation software, the world is your oyster. 

Each of these tools either has a free or trial version for you to check out, so you don’t have to commit just yet. 

When it’s time to choose, consider the following aspects to find the right presentation software for you: 

  • Ease of use. Is it easy for you to understand or will it require lots of training before you can start creating presentations? 
  • Accessibility. Can you access your presentation software from any device or are you limited to carrying your laptop to every presentation? 
  • Real-time collaboration. Can multiple people work on the same project or do you have to keep downloading and emailing drafts? 
  • Create design tools. Can you create presentations with dynamic design elements or are you stuck with the same kind of slide each time? 
  • Template availability. Is this tool only accessible to a design professional or can anyone create stunning presentations through pre-designed and updated templates? 
Piktochart , for example, would be a fantastic presentation software choice among the long list of PowerPoint alternatives for teams looking for a variety of eye-catching designs without requiring much technical know-how. Meanwhile, Microsoft PowerPoint might be the best presentation software for those who are just looking to play it safe. 

Hopefully, this best presentation software list sheds some light on the tools at your disposal. Choose wisely! 

Robin

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Best presentation software of 2023

By Steven T. Wright

Posted on Jun 22, 2022 3:22 PM EDT

12 minute read

Best overall

Microsoft PowerPoint is the best presentation software overall.

Microsoft PowerPoint

Best for professionals.

Canva is the best presentation software for professionals.

Best for Zoom

Prezi is the best presentation software for zoom.

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Teemu Paananen/Unsplash

Whether you’re a student or a working professional, everybody has to make presentations from time to time and that usually involves presentation software. But when you’re frantically Googling around to refresh your PowerPoint knowledge, it’s only natural to wonder what is really the best presentation software out there. Yes, everybody knows that Microsoft’s the biggest player in the slideshow game but there are actually a lot of alternatives to explore. If you expand your horizons, you may find another app that makes more sense for you. Expand your office app horizons and see how the best presentation software can make your job a little easier.

Best overall: Microsoft PowerPoint

Best for professionals: canva, best for zoom: prezi.

  • Best for Mac: Apple Keynote  

Best for students: Beautiful.ai

Best budget: google slides, how we chose the best presentation software.

As a journalist with over a decade of experience, I know how to present information to all sorts of audiences effectively and efficiently. Over the years, I’ve worked with a variety of clients to craft copy for presentations, as well as the slideshows themselves. I’ve used the best software in the business, as well as quite a lot of the bad stuff, so I know what will work for you and your needs. 

In making this list, I relied on my own firsthand experience with presentation software, as well as consulting professional tutorials and critical reviews. I also personally created a number of sample slideshows using prebuilt templates and custom layouts of my own in order to put the programs through their paces. I used both the stalwart software suites that everyone knows, as well as a number of lesser-known alternatives that have emerged over the past few years. If an impressive new program hits the block, we will update this list accordingly once we get some hands-on time with it.

Things to consider when buying presentation software

There has been an explosion of presentation software over the past few years, and each of the program’s developers has their own pitch to lure people away from PowerPoint. The most important things to consider when choosing presentation software will vary from person to person. A small business owner putting together a professional presentation with original branding may need different tools to make an appealing pitch, versus a student building a last-minute slideshow for a group project to present the results of their research in Econ class.

There are a wide variety of bells and whistles that presentation building programs boast as their killer features, including brand kit integration, easy social media sharing options, offline access, seamless collaboration, AI suggestions, and analytics. These extra features will seem very helpful to enterprise customers, but the average person should realistically prioritize more traditional factors like ease-of-use, customizability, and cost. There are, however, a few elements that every single person who uses presentation software needs, so let’s walk through the fundamentals.

Ease of use

No one wants to spend hours learning how to make a basic slideshow. While all of these programs take time to master, some of them are easier to pick up quickly than others. An intuitive piece of software grabs your attention and allows you to perform basic actions like adding slides and assets without time-consuming tutorials. The more professional-grade programs out there might take a little more time to master, but they’re rarely difficult to use.

Prebuilt templates

The number one thing that you want from a presentation software is a good-looking final product, and templates help you achieve that goal quickly and easily. All of the competitive presentation software suites out there have a library of pre-built templates that let you plug in information quickly. Quality and quantity separate the good programs from the great ones, though. Some apps have more templates than others, and some templates look better than others. On top of that, some programs lock their best templates behind a premium subscription, which leaves you relying on the same basic structures over and over. 

The truly professional-grade software also includes a selection of prebuilt art assets to help you bring a personal touch to the presentation. If a program doesn’t have an impressive set of templates, it isn’t worth using.

Customizability

While most people want to start building their presentations with a template, you need to change some things around if you want to keep things looking fresh. Professionals, in particular, will probably want to customize every aspect of their slideshows, from the color of the background to the exact pixel position of images. This obviously increases the amount of time it takes to craft a presentation, so it’s important that the systems for making those tweaks are intuitive and easy to use. Not every user is going to need the level of customizability, but it’s definitely something worth considering.

Who’s it for?

Every presenter needs to build a slideshow for their audience. They should probably ask that question when they pick which presentation software to use as well, as it can help determine what software they should use. Students might need the expansive collaboration tools of certain platforms but might not need the pinpoint design controls in others. While the presentation software listed below can all make a great slideshow with enough time and effort, your own use case and the intended audience will have a big impact on your choice.

Cost & affordability

Very few presentation builders have a simple, one-time price tag. Most operate on a subscription model, where you can buy a month’s use for a certain amount, or save money by buying a year at a time. A few are free, though many appear to only offer a free trial or stripped-down version that will allow you to put together something basic before quite literally buying in.

If you’re looking to build just one or two presentations a year, it’s probably best to stick to one of the free options. However, if you have to build slideshows on a regular basis, it’s probably worth sinking your money into a subscription to the program you really like.

Generally speaking, as you might expect, the more impressive and in-depth software costs more than the more traditional fare. However, because many of the most popular programs in the space (such as Microsoft PowerPoint) come as part of a suite, you will need to weigh the benefits of not only the presentation software but also the other programs that come along with it. If you’re a die-hard Microsoft Word user, for example, you’re already paying for the Microsoft Office suite, but the calculus gets more complicated if you prefer Google Docs.

The best presentation software: Reviews & Recommendations

By now, you probably have a good idea of what you should be looking for in presentation software, so now we’ll get into the interesting part. As mentioned above, we’ve broken down our picks based on a few common use cases, as well as the criteria we mentioned above. Regardless of which one you decide on, all of these programs are powerful tools that can produce a slick slideshow with a little time and effort, and you’d be well served by any of them.

Why it made the cut: Whether you’re a broke student or a busy professional, Microsoft PowerPoint can do whatever you need. It’s also reasonably priced.

  • Platforms: Windows, macOS, iOS, Android, Web
  • Suite or standalone: Microsoft Office 365 Suite
  • Special features: Designer, MS Office integration
  • Free version: Yes
  • Well-known interface imitated by competitors
  • Powerful and accessible
  • Good templates
  • Part of a popular software suite
  • Slight learning curve

Even after testing more than a dozen programs, Microsoft PowerPoint remains the go-to presentation software for most people. Setting the industry standard, it offers great templates, an accessible interface, an impressive library of prebuilt art assets, and plenty of tools for building a slick slideshow. It also supports real-time collaboration, offline editing, and third-party content embedding. At $70 a year, PowerPoint is significantly cheaper than most of its competitors and it’s part of Microsoft Office, a software suite that most companies pay for and workers can’t live without. 

Of course, it isn’t perfect. PowerPoint makes it very easy to make a basic presentation, but it will likely take you longer to make something that looks polished and professional in PowerPoint than with design-forward programs like Canva or Prezi. Even top-flight presentations are achievable, though, in a reasonable timeframe. PowerPoint might not be the best presentation program for every situation, but it’s certainly the best for the average person.

Why it made the cut: Canva creates beautiful, professional-grade presentations faster than its rivals, and it’s easier to use than most.

  • Platforms: Web, Windows, iOS, Android
  • Suite or standalone: Standalone
  • Special features: Amazing templates, very customizable
  • Excellent free version
  • Extremely easy to use
  • Makes beautiful presentations fast
  • Eye-catching templates
  • Harder-to-use advanced features
  • Limited offline use

If you need to make a striking business presentation in an hour, Canva is absolutely the software for you. Designed from the ground up for business professionals who don’t want to have to use another program (i.e., Photoshop or GIMP) to create visually compelling content, Canva delivers on this promise in spades. 

Canva’s gorgeous templates are the best of any of the programs we tested, and its free version is far more robust than you’d expect for a costless trial. Unlike many of these other programs, it creates virtually any marketing material you can imagine, including videos, logos, social media posts, and even resumes. It also includes splashy features that most people won’t use, like brand kit support and easy sharing to social media.

Canva’s simplicity has drawbacks, too, though. It can be a bit difficult to get it to make complicated charts, tables, or diagrams, and it lacks the familiar (but clunky) customizability of PowerPoint. However, if you’re looking to make the most beautiful presentation you can, Canva is a great choice for your business.

Why it made the cut: Prezi is a strong program that structures its basic features in a completely different manner than its competitors. It also has very good Zoom integration.

  • Platforms: Web
  • Special features: Zoom integration, unique structure
  • Free version: No (Two-week free trial)
  • More creative structure than competitors
  • Intuitive interface
  • Expansive feature set
  • Doesn’t work for everyone
  • Must pay more for advanced features

If you’re really tired of the straight-line structure mandated by other presentation software, Prezi gives you a little more freedom to build things your way. Prezi uses a topic-oriented form that allows you to easily string your ideas in an order that makes sense to you. The basic idea behind Prezi is that you create bubbles of individual content, and then you thread a path through those ideas to create a presentation with a physical form that’s more enticing and conversational than just a linear succession of slides.

While this unique approach makes Prezi a worthy alternative on its own, the app also boasts plenty of specialized features you’d want in a premium program, including a large asset library, social media integration, and collaboration support. 

Though any presentation software can work with Zoom via the screen-share function, Prezi features a very useful video call-focused mode, Prezi Video, which allows you to build a presentation as an overlay that appears in your Zoom window so people can see you and your slides.

Prezi’s freeform structure isn’t going to work for everyone, but if Powerpoint feels stifling, it might open new doors for you.

Best for Mac: Keynote

Why it made the cut: Apple’s answer to PowerPoint might not be as popular as its competitor, but it’s still pretty powerful in its own right.

  • Platforms: macOS, iOS, Web
  • Suite or Standalone: Apple Software Suite
  • Special features: iCloud support, multiple formats
  • Free version: Yes (with an Apple account)
  • Familiar to most Mac users
  • Better asset library than most
  • No-frills feature set
  • Lacks unique selling points

If you’re a Mac user , you’ve probably at least considered using Keynote to put a presentation together. While all of the other programs on this list work on a Mac as web apps, Keynote is the only app made specifically for the platform.

Like PowerPoint, Keynote is a wide-reaching program designed to help anyone make a sharp-looking presentation, from students to professionals. It has a more robust feature set than other PowerPoint competitors–including better default templates, a bigger asset library, and desktop support. It doesn’t quite have the versatility of enterprise-facing apps like Canva, but you can put together a great-looking slideshow for school or a recurring meeting.

On the other hand, it can be a little tricky to pick up: The interface isn’t quite as intuitive as Google Slides, which is also free. If you have access to both, you get a choice: Build a more striking presentation in Keynote, or put something together quickly in Slides.

Why it made the cut: Beautiful.ai’s AI-powered presentations allow you to make a sharp slideshow in no time flat, and its generous free trial gives time to try it out.

  • Special features: AI integration
  • Clean interface
  • Modern features
  • Simple and effective
  • Expensive for what it is
  • Limited assets and templates

Looking to build a clean, modern presentation in as little time as possible? Beautiful.ai uses AI to help you build a visually stunning presentation in no time flat. While it’s less of a household name than our other picks, it’s the choice of many tech companies for its uncluttered interface, eye-catching templates, and overall no-fuss approach. 

Compared to PowerPoint or Canva, Beautiful.ai does not have a rich feature set or an infinite variety of template options. What the content library lacks in volume, it makes up for in style, though. Its appealing, elegant content elements lend themselves to clean, modern presentations. More importantly, the program’s AI assistant knows how to use those assets. It automatically tailors your slideshow’s design to fit the information you want to present, so you’ll wind up with something thoughtfully prepared before you know it.

Why it made the cut: Google Slides is not only an excellent presentation program—it’s also one of the only ones actually free with no strings attached.

  • Platforms: Web, iOS, Android
  • Suite or standalone: Google Workspace
  • Special features: Easy collaboration, Google integration
  • Free for anyone with a Google account
  • Familiar interface
  • Easy to share and collaborate
  • Decent templates
  • Somewhat basic in functionality
  • Clunky for some users

When it comes to software, there’s “free to use,” and then there’s free. Most of the software on this list offers either a restricted free mode or a time-limited trial. Google Slides is actually free, fully free, for another with a Google account. And it holds its own, even compared to its premium competitors.

Google Slides feels like a simplified version of PowerPoint. It’s a little easier to learn the basics, but also offers fewer templates, screen transitions, and content. It also lacks a built-in asset library to fill dead space, though the program’s Google Drive integration makes it easy to add your own. Like most Google programs, it also supports add-ons that give it enhanced features, like the ability to solve equations within the slideshow.

If you’re looking to make an extremely sharp presentation, Google Slides will take a bit more effort than most. If you need to make a basic slideshow and you grew up on earlier versions of PowerPoint, you’ll feel right at home using Slides.

Based on our research, the three most popular programs are Microsoft PowerPoint, Google Slides, and Keynote, roughly in that order. PowerPoint is far more popular than the other two, though. All three are good options, depending on what you’re looking for. All things being equal, though, we recommend PowerPoint.

Generally, most of the programs listed here cost between $7 and $15 a month for their premium packages. However, Google Slides and Keynote are free, so we recommend those for customers on a budget.

Canva and PowerPoint are both great programs that offer about equal value. It’s much easier to create a beautiful, eye-catching presentation in Canva, but PowerPoint’s advanced features give you more options. If you need to make slick-looking professional presentations on a frequent basis, we recommend Canva for its superior ease-of-use.

Adobe had its own competitor to PowerPoint, Adobe Presenter. The company recently ended support for Presenter on June 1, 2022.

Final thoughts on the best presentation software

While everyone wants to use the best program for the job, the truth is that all presentation builders have a lot in common with each other. If you’re familiar with one, it often makes sense to stay put. Despite all the similarities, it can take some time to learn a new system. If you’re constrained and frustrated, or are using presentation software for the first time, you should consider a wide range of options beyond PowerPoint.

Though alternatives like Beautiful.ai, Canva, or (especially) Prezi cost a bit more, they each have strong features that may work better for your purposes. That said, sometimes the most popular presentation software options are the best. If you don’t have specific expectations or need to clear a high bar for design, PowerPoint and free options like Google Slides should work well, and have the benefit of wide adoption in corporate workplaces.

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Blog Graphic Design 12 Best Presentation Software for 2024

12 Best Presentation Software for 2024

Written by: Krystle Wong Jan 12, 2024

12 Best Presentation Software

Whether you’re a student, professional or entrepreneur, having access to the right presentation tools can make all the difference.

When you craft a well-executed presentation , your message becomes more memorable. You’re not just sharing information; you’re weaving a story, painting a picture and leaving a lasting impact on your audience’s minds. 

We’re living in the age of information overload, where attention spans are shorter than ever. A good presentation slide takes this into account, breaking down complex information into bite-sized chunks. It guides your audience through a logical flow, allowing them to digest information effortlessly and retain key points without feeling overwhelmed.

To help you stay ahead of the game, I’ve compiled a list of the 12 best software for presentations. These PowerPoint alternatives offer a combination of user-friendly interfaces, stunning visuals, collaboration features and innovative functionalities that will take your presentations to the next level. 

Let’s dive in and explore these top presentation software picks!

1. Venngage 

Venngage

Allow me to be a little bit biased here but my top pick is none other than, you guessed it — Venngage! Venngage goes beyond just presentations to focus on data visualization and transforming complex information into visually appealing and engaging visuals. 

One of the standout features of Venngage as a presentation software is the extensive library of infographic elements. Gain access to a wide range of pre-designed elements such as icons, charts, maps as well as illustrations to simplify the process of creating data-driven and visually appealing presentations.

You don’t have to be a pro when designing with Venngage. Venngage’s drag-and-drop interface allows you to customize your presentations by simply dragging and dropping elements onto the canvas. You can tweak sizes, colors and layouts with ease, making your presentations visually cohesive and personalized, even if you’re not a design wizard. 

Just so you know, some of our features and templates are free to use and some require a small monthly fee. Sign-up is completely free, as is access to Venngage’s online drag-and-drop editor. Here’s how Venngage’s presentation maker can become your secret weapon in the quest for presentation success.

Vast selection of templates

Venngage boasts an extensive library of professionally designed templates, catering to a wide range of industries and presentation purposes. Whether you’re creating a marketing report, educational presentation or business pitch, Venngage’s presentation tool offers templates that provide a solid foundation for your designs. 

Save 20+ hours of designing with Venngage’s fully customizable, pre-designed infographic templates. Thes e presentation templates provide a good foundation with well-structured layouts and visually appealing aesthetics. 

Presentation templates

Data visualization made easy

Venngage simplifies the process of data visualization, making it accessible to users of all backgrounds. With a few clicks, you can transform dull statistics into visually engaging charts and graphs that tell a compelling story.

Data visualization

Seamless real-time in-editor collaboration tools

Venngage brings teamwork to the next level with our seamless collaboration tools designed to foster collaboration across teams, departments and the entire organization. Whether you’re in the same room or across the globe, Venngage enables real-time collaboration that makes working together becomes a breeze. 

Consistently brand your designs with smart Autobrand features

Effortlessly infuse your presentation slides with your brand’s colors, fonts and logos with Venngage’s My Brand Kit . Upload your brand assets and create engaging presentations by applying your branding to any template you create on Venngage.

Who is it for

Marketers, designers, educators and businesses that require data-driven and visually appealing presentations.

Key features 

Infographic elements, data visualization tools, collaboration options, customizable templates.

Create your first 5 designs with Venngage for free and upgrade to a premium or business plan for $10 USD/month per user and $24 USD/month per user to enjoy premium features. For larger teams who need extra support, controls and security, the enterprise plan starts from $499 USD/month for 10+ seats.

Additionally, there are also plans available for classrooms priced at $99 USD/year for up to 35 students per instructor. Non profit organizations can also apply for a nonprofit discount to any Venngage plan.

2. Microsoft PowerPoint

Microsoft PowerPoint

Source: Screenshot from Microsoft PowerPoint

Even with dozens of presentation software and tools out there, PowerPoint presentations have stood the test of time as one of the best presentation software. In fact, 89% of people still use PowerPoint presentations over competitor services . 

Whether you’re a student, teacher, business professional or just a creative soul, PowerPoint’s user-friendly interface allows both beginners and experienced users to create presentations with ease.

PowerPoint delivers captivating and engaging presentations through its advanced animation and transition effects. You can create interactive PowerPoint presentations by captivating your audience and guiding them through your content with seamless transitions and eye-catching animations. 

Seamless integration with other Microsoft Office tools is another significant advantage of PowerPoint as a presentation software. As part of the Microsoft Office suite, PowerPoint effortlessly integrates with other familiar applications such as Word and Excel. This integration allows you to incorporate charts, graphs and written content from these tools directly into your presentation. 

However, collaboration features in PowerPoint can be somewhat limited compared to dedicated collaboration platforms. While you can share and co-edit presentations with others, the collaboration options may not be as robust as those offered by specialized presentation tools.

Suitable for individuals, students, educators and businesses of all sizes.

Customizable templates, multimedia support, extensive slide editing options, robust animations and transitions.

You can subscribe to PowerPoint as part of your Microsoft 365 subscription with various plans tailored for businesses, ranging from $6 to $22 USD/month. Additionally, there is also the option to purchase an unbundled PowerPoint account separately, priced at $159.99 USD.

3. Google Slides

Google Slides

Source: Screenshot from Google Slides

Unlike PowerPoint which requires file sharing and manual syncing for teamwork, Google Slides enables real-time collaboration and easy access from any device with an internet connection. 

Google Slides shines in its seamless collaboration capabilities. Multiple users can work on the same presentation simultaneously, enabling real-time editing and fostering efficient teamwork. The integrated commenting feature on Google Slides allows for shared feedback and discussions, enhancing collaboration even further.

Google Slides’ cloud-based storage and auto-saving feature ensures that your work is constantly saved, minimizing the risk of losing progress or important changes. No more panicking over unsaved slides and changes. 

But that also means that Google Slides heavily relies on an internet connection for full functionality and access is more limited compared to desktop-based software. Although an offline mode is available, Google Slides has certain limitations and may not provide the same level of functionality as when connected to the internet.

Templates and customization features-wise, Google Slides also have fewer design options compared to other presentation tools. This may limit the level of visual creativity and flexibility for those seeking intricate designs or specialized effects.

Ideal for remote teams, educators, students and anyone looking for easy collaboration and access from any device.

Real-time collaboration, shared commenting, offline mode and built-in sharing options.

Google Slides is accessible to all individuals with a Google account at no cost, providing all users with access to its full range of features. However, for businesses and teams looking for additional organizational capabilities, there are subscription plans available ranging from $6 to $18 USD/month.

4. Keynote (for Mac users)

Keynote

Source: Screenshot from Keynote

For Apple users, Keynote is a presentation tool designed exclusively for your Apple devices and is available on macOS, iOS and iPadOS. Keynote is known for its sleek and intuitive interface, reflecting Apple’s design aesthetics. 

It offers visually appealing templates, animations, and transitions, allowing users to create polished and modern-looking presentations. Keynote users can seamlessly incorporate images, videos, audio files and interactive elements into their presentations. The presentation software also includes a wide range of animations and transitions, enabling smooth and cinematic effects that bring slides to life.

Keynote presentations is known for its seamless integration within the Apple ecosystem. It works effortlessly with other Apple applications, allowing users to combine different elements and data from various sources. Presentations created in Keynote can be easily shared and accessed across Apple devices, ensuring a consistent experience for both the presenter and the audience.

Additionally, Keynote as a presentation software offers collaborative editing capabilities, enabling multiple users to work on the same presentation simultaneously. Users can share their presentations with others, who can then provide feedback, make edits and contribute to the project in real-time.

That said, since Keynote is exclusively designed for Apple devices, it may not be accessible or fully compatible with non-Apple platforms. Hence, sharing presentations created in Keynote with users on different platforms may require exporting or converting the files to a compatible format, which can lead to potential formatting issues or loss of certain features.

Mac users, creatives, professionals, educators and anyone who wants visually stunning presentations.

Elegant templates, advanced multimedia options, cinematic transitions and collaborative editing.

Keynote is available for free on Apple devices, including macOS, iOS, and iPadOS. As it comes pre-installed with these devices, users can access and use Keynote without any additional cost.

Prezi

Source: Screenshot from Prezi

Known for its distinctive zooming presentation style, Prezi revolutionizes the way you create presentations by offering a visually engaging and non-linear approach. 

One of Prezi’s renowned features is its unique zooming and transition effects, allowing presenters to navigate through a virtual canvas seamlessly. This dynamic presentation style enhances engagement by creating a sense of movement and spatial relationship between ideas.

Moreover, Prezi offers cloud-based collaboration, making it easy for multiple users to collaborate on a presentation in real-time. This feature facilitates seamless teamwork, enabling users to collectively develop and refine their presentations regardless of their physical locations.

Prezi presentations also include interactive elements, such as embedded videos, images and hyperlinks. Utilizing these elements would allow presenters to create interactive presentations and engage their audience on a deeper level.

However, Prezi has a steeper learning curve compared to more traditional presentation tools. Users may require some time and practice to become proficient in navigating the canvas, creating smooth transitions and effectively utilizing all of Prezi’s features.

Creative professionals, educators and individuals who want to create visually captivating and non-linear presentations.

Zooming presentation style, interactive elements, cloud-based collaboration and reusable templates.

For individuals & business professionals

Basics: Create and share up to 5 visual projects for free

Standard: Starting at $5 USD/month

Plus: Starting at $12 USD/month

Premium: Starting at $16 USD/month

Teams: Starting at $19 USD/month per user (billed annually)

For Students & Educators

EDU Plus: Starting at $3/month

EDU Pro: Starting at $4/month

EDU Teams: Enquiry required with Prezi sales team

Canva

Source: Screenshot from Canva

One of the great things about Canva as a presentation tool is its user-friendly interface, which makes it super easy to use even if you’re not a design pro. You can simply drag and drop elements to create your presentation slides without breaking a sweat.

Canva’s vast collection of pre-designed templates caters to various purposes and occasions. The availability of these templates allows users to jumpstart their design projects with professional-looking layouts, saving valuable time and effort.

For businesses or educational institutions working on group projects or marketing campaigns, Canva also offers collaboration features that enhance teamwork and co-creation. Users can invite team members or clients to collaborate on a design project, enabling real-time feedback and efficient design processes. 

While Canva does offer some basic slide transition effects, the range and customization options for transitions may be limited compared to dedicated presentation software like Microsoft PowerPoint or Apple Keynote. 

Individuals, students, small businesses and startups seeking professional-looking marketing materials and presentations.

Extensive template options, intuitive drag-and-drop interface, ability to share presentations as downloadable files or online links and built-in multimedia support for adding videos , images, and audio to slides.

The free version of Canva provides a wide range of features and resources, with the only limitations being the use of premium resources that can be acquired either through separate purchases or by subscribing to the Canva Pro plan. The Canva Pro plan is available for $12.99 USD per month or $119.99 USD per year.

For collaborative purposes, Canva Teams is available at a price of $14.99 USD per month, with an additional charge of $14.99 USD per month for every team member beyond the initial five.

7. Adobe Express

Adobe Express

Source: Screenshot from Adobe Express

As part of the Adobe Creative Cloud suite, Adobe Express is a presentation software that offers a simplified and user-friendly interface. With its intuitive interface, Adobe Express allows users to create visually stunning presentations with ease. Users can access both design professionals and individuals without extensive design experience.

One of the notable advantages of Adobe Express is its seamless integration with other Adobe products, such as Photoshop and Illustrator. This integration enables users to leverage the power of these industry-standard design tools within their presentations, providing access to advanced design features and a vast library of high-quality assets. 

Adobe Express is also great for creating interactive presentations. Its extensive multimedia support, allowing users to incorporate videos, audio files and interactive elements to keep your audience engaged.

That being said,  some of its advanced features may require familiarity with other Adobe tools, which can be challenging for beginners who are not already familiar with the Adobe Creative Cloud ecosystem.

Designers, creative professionals, individuals and businesses seeking professional-grade presentation design.

Professional design options, multimedia support, easy integration with other Adobe products and cloud-based collaboration.

While the free version for Adobe Express includes all the core features, users can gain access to premium templates and features when they upgrade to the Premium subscription for $9.99 USD/month. 

For businesses and teams, Adobe provides tailored plans that include additional features like collaboration tools, centralized license management and enterprise-level support. The pricing for these plans depends on the number of licenses and the specific needs of the organization. It’s best to consult with Adobe or their authorized resellers to get accurate pricing information for business plans.

8. Haiku Deck

Haiku Deck

Source: Haiku Deck

Haiku Deck is all about visual storytelling, offering a simple and minimalist approach to designing presentations. With its clean and minimalist templates, Haiku Deck makes it a breeze to create presentations that focus on eye-catching images.

Haiku Deck is a user-friendly presentation software that offers a straightforward and intuitive interface. It’s designed to be easily accessible on both computers and mobile devices, giving you the flexibility to create quick and practical presentations on the go.

Plus, the presentation tool seamlessly integrates with image search engines, making it a piece of cake to find and add high-quality visuals that enhance the overall look and feel of your presentation.

However,if you’re looking for advanced features like complex animations or interactive elements, you might not find them here. While the clean and minimalist templates are gorgeous, they don’t offer as much flexibility for customization.

Educators, individuals and professionals who appreciate the power of visual storytelling and minimalist design.

Image-focused templates, easy-to-use interface, cloud-based collaboration and seamless image search integration.

Haiku Deck offers a free trial that allows you to experience the software with one presentation. If you decide to upgrade, they have different pricing plans available. Additionally, Haiku Deck also offers special pricing to qualifying nonprofit organizations, students and educators.

The Pro plans are available at $9.99 per month with annual billing or $19.99 per month with monthly billing. For those seeking advanced features, the Premium plans are priced at $29.99 per month.

what is presentation software used for

Source: Screenshot from Ludus

Ludus brings together the best of both worlds by offering the traditional slide deck format along with interactive and multimedia elements that take presentations to a whole new level.

The presentation software is rich in multimedia capabilities, allowing users to seamlessly integrate videos, audio and elements to create interactive presentations that captivate the audience.

Ludus offers unique presentation tools that enable users to incorporate interactive elements like clickable buttons, hover effects and embedded web content, enabling a more dynamic and engaging presentation experience. 

This makes Ludus a great choice for designers, creatives, marketing professionals, and anyone who wants to create interactive and visually appealing presentations that leave a lasting impression. Collaboration is another area where Ludus excels. The software offers collaborative editing, allowing multiple users to edit presentations simultaneously. 

However, it’s worth mentioning that Ludus has relatively limited templates compared to some other presentation software options. While the customization options are vast, users might find themselves starting from scratch or investing more time in creating the initial design. Additionally, for individuals new to the platform, there might be a learning curve involved in fully harnessing all of Ludus’ features and capabilities.

Designers, creatives, marketing professionals and anyone looking for interactive and visually appealing presentations.

Interactive and multimedia elements, collaborative editing, extensive design customization, real-time comments and feedback.

Ludus offers a starting price of $14.99 USD/month per user for teams consisting of 1-15 members with all features included. For larger teams requiring additional licenses, Ludus encourages reaching out for more information on pricing. It’s worth noting that Ludus provides a 30-day free trial, allowing users to explore the platform and its features before committing to a subscription.

10. Slidebean

Slidebean

Source: Screenshot from Slidebean

Slidebean offers a unique approach to slide design by automating the process and simplifying the creation of well-designed presentations. With its automation features, Slidebean streamlines the design process, saving users valuable time and effort.

The highlight of Slidebean is its automated slide design functionality. Using artificial intelligence (AI), the software generates visually appealing slide layouts based on the content provided. Slidebean also offers collaboration options, allowing multiple team members to work on a presentation simultaneously. 

Another advantage of Slidebean is its AI-powered content suggestions. The software intelligently analyzes the presentation content and provides helpful suggestions for improving the messaging and overall flow. This feature ensures that users can effectively communicate their ideas and engage their audience. 

Unlike Ludus, Slidebean may not cater to users who prefer extensive customization and control over their slide layouts. Certain advanced features are only available in premium plans, which may require an upgrade for those seeking more advanced functionality.

Startups, entrepreneurs, small businesses, and individuals who want to create polished presentations quickly.

Automated design, content suggestions, collaboration tools and pitch deck-specific templates.

The free version offers limited functionalities, but it provides a sufficient opportunity to experience Slidebean’s capabilities and understand its workflow. However, to export your presentation and access advanced features, upgrading to a higher plan is necessary. 

The all-access plan is available at $228 USD/year, while additional services such as startup expert consultations and pitch deck and financial model services are available for separate purchase. 

11. Beautiful.ai

Beautiful.ai

Source: Screenshot from Beautiful.ai

Beautiful.ai aims to simplify the process of creating visually stunning and professional-looking slides with minimal effort. One of the notable strengths of the presentation software is its collection of smart templates and design suggestions. 

Their templates are intelligently designed to provide visually appealing layouts, saving users valuable time and effort in creating presentations. Unlike other types of presentation software, the platform leverages AI-powered technology to offer layout optimization, ensuring that slide elements are positioned optimally for maximum impact.

Beautiful.ai also offers time-saving features that streamline the presentation creation process. The software automatically adjusts the layout and formatting as users add or modify content, eliminating the need for manual adjustments. 

As the software provides smart templates and design suggestions, customization options may be somewhat limited. Users may find that certain design elements or layout adjustments are not as flexible as they would like. 

Individuals, startups and professionals who want visually impressive presentations without extensive design skills.

Smart templates, automated design suggestions, AI-powered layout optimization and easy slide customization.

Beautiful.ai provides two subscription options for users. The Pro plan is available at a monthly cost of $12 USD /month, while the Team plan is priced at $40 USD/month. Both plans are billed annually. You can also subscribe to the monthly subscription for ad hoc projects and gain access to all pro features for $45 USD/month (billed monthly). 

There is a 14-day free trial period that allows users to thoroughly test and explore the features and capabilities of the tool before committing to a subscription.

Pitch

Source: Screenshot from Pitch

Pitch is a modern video presentation maker that stands out with its collaborative and iterative approach to presentation creation.

One of the key strengths of Pitch lies in its collaborative features. The presentation software provides robust collaboration tools that allow team members to work together in real-time. This makes it easy for users to collaborate on presentation content, provide feedback and make revisions collectively.

Pitch boasts an extensive slide library, offering a wide range of professionally designed templates to choose from. These templates serve as a foundation for creating visually stunning presentations while providing a starting point that saves time and ensures a polished look.

The availability of diverse templates caters to different industries, topics and presentation styles, allowing users to create presentations for their needs.

Seamless integration with project management tools is another advantage of Pitch. The software integrates well with popular project management platforms, enabling users to streamline their workflow by syncing tasks, deadlines and other project-related information with their presentations. 

For teams, startups and businesses that value collaboration, feedback and the ability to iterate on their presentations

Collaboration tools, version control, project management integration and template library.

Users can create unlimited presentations and enjoy the starter plan for free or upgrade to Pro for $8 USD/month, billed annually. 

There you have it — the top 12 best presentation tools for the year! Whether you value simplicity, collaboration, automation, design versatility or data visualization, these presentation software examples have a solution out there for your future presentations.

Got your mind set on your to-go presentation software? Great! Now it’s time to start creating your slides and ace that presentation. 

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What is Presentation Software?

what is presentation software used for

Why a great presentation software is crucial to the success of organization

Any experienced salesperson knows that words can only get you so far. You can articulate the features and benefits of your product or service to perfection. But eventually, the prospect will want to see it for themselves.

This is especially true in the world of software. Where users spend hours navigating apps, sites, and programs as part of their daily responsibilities.

According to research gathered by 3M (known for their invention of the Post-It Note) visuals are processed by the human brain 60,000 times faster than text.

Presentations can truly make or break a prospect’s experience with your brand. A great presentation is engaging and conveys value through visuals. And it helps prospects visualize themselves as beneficiaries of your product or service.

What is presentation software?

A presentation software (sometimes called a presentation program) is a digital tool. It utilizes sequences of graphics, text, audio, and video to accompany a spoken presentation. These sequences, often called slides, are consolidated in virtual files called “slide decks.”

Presentation software across the web vary greatly in their capabilities, but they must offer at least three essential features:

  • A text editor with custom formatting
  • A means of inserting, editing, and resizing digital graphic
  • A slideshow system for displaying these visuals sequentially

Some presentation programs, like Microsoft PowerPoint, must be downloaded onto a computer’s hard drive before they can be used. Others, like Google Slides and Prezi, can be accessed from an internet browser.

what is presentation software used for

Why is a Good Presentation Software Important?

Oftentimes, if a prospect agrees to view a presentation, you’ve at least piqued their interest.

You’ve likely spent some time on the phone or exchanged a few emails. Perhaps the prospect has visited your website a couple times. They’re likely not sold on you and actively forming their opinion of your brand.

This is why it’s imperative that your first presentation is a slam dunk. When a prospect sees you, your brand, and your product on display, you want them to leave excited for the benefits you can offer them.

A great presentation software gives you the tools and functionality you need to create a winning presentation. And create it quickly and easily.

In addition to usability, below are more benefits a good presentation software can bring to your organization.

Consolidation of information

A great slide deck combined with quality content is often one of the best single sources of sales information in your company.

Most sales decks contain a complete pitch all the way from pain point identification to feature/benefit pairings. Testimonials, best practices, and case studies are often scattered throughout.

This means you have a single file you can hand off to new sales reps for training. Or, if you need to pull a testimonial from a happy customer, you can find it in the slide deck. This one-stop shop for valuable sales information is made possible by a good presentation software.

Mobility for reps on the go

If your sales reps are doing a lot of physical site visits, having a mobile sales presentation that they can carry around in their pockets is a whole lot easier than lugging around a laptop. Almost every modern presentation software offers robust mobile functionality.

Having the consolidated information mentioned in the last point available at all times is a powerful asset for the rep doing on-site visits or demos.

For an example of how impactful a mobile presentation can be, check The Real Problem of Humanity as it pertains to technology by Tristan Harris.

Consistency across the team

Most presentation solutions allow for the creation of custom templates. This, combined with a “master slide deck” means that you can ensure greater alignment across your sales reps. This, with a content management platform , means your content is version-controlled and up-to-date. Which is important as its being presented to prospects.

Rapid content personalization

Let’s say you’re about to hop on a presentation call with a prospect. Right before the call, you receive an email from him letting you know his boss will be on the call as well. As it turns out, she’s particularly interested in one specific feature of your product.

With a great presentation tool, you can edit slides immediately (often from your mobile device, if needed). You can also delete, append, or customize information. This allows you to quickly tailor your messaging and visuals to fit the needs of a particular prospect or market segment.

Firsthand feedback from prospects

There are a lot of advantages of making sales presentations a two-way conversation as opposed to a monologue. Even if you can’t meet in person, real-time verbal feedback from prospects is incredibly valuable information.

A good sales rep will listen closely for clues that certain slides are holding the attention of the audience. These are moments that likely deserve to be highlighted or more deeply articulated.

A great presentation software will allow you to add slides, write copy, and format visuals immediately after the prospect hangs up. All while the information is fresh in the presenter’s mind. That way you can elevate their points of interest.

Thus, an easy-to-use presentation software is key to a sales team’s ability to quickly iterate on and improve effective content.

Getting the Most Out of Your Presentation Software

Vastly more important than your tool of choice is how you use it. Modern presentation software can produce razor-sharp, engaging presentations that convert prospects to sales. But they’re also capable of producing abominations that no prospect should ever see.

Abide by the following guidelines and you’ll be on the right track. Not only to avoid common presentation pitfalls, but also to help your message stick.

Utilize your Notes section

While a more conversational tone is obviously the goal, hitting all the important beats of a sales presentation from memory can be tough. This is where presentation notes come in handy.

Whether it’s a word-for-word script or bullet points, every presentation software offers the ability to write formatted notes associated with your slide decks.

When you present, these notes will be visible to you alone. This is especially useful when delivering presentations remotely over the web. If you’re going to read a word-for-word script, be sure to add some inflection and natural pauses to avoid sounding robotic.

Utilize grids when formatting visuals

Pixelated graphics and misaligned visuals in slide decks can make you look like an amateur. Which is not the message you want to send to your audience.

It’s safe to say that most sales reps are not also trained graphic designers. It’s all the more important that we rely on grids to line up our images in an aesthetically-pleasing way.

All modern presentation tools offer some sort of grid for optimal image placement. Cross-referencing your visuals against the grid takes mere minutes. But it could potentially save you embarrassment and help build credibility with your prospect.

Tell a story

Real-life stories are what captivate and unite humans. It’s been neurologically proven that stories engage more areas of the brain than the parts that store and recall facts. In fact, science shows us that our brains don’t distinguish between hearing a story and actually experiencing it.

That means your prospect will tune out if you’re reciting a laundry list of features and benefits. They’re more likely to stay engaged if you tell a real story of how your product helped a real person.

This also means that when you describe a real-life pain point of someone in a similar position, the odds are high that your prospect will feel that pain. It follows that they’ll also feel a greater urgency for whatever you’re offering.

The Hero’s Journey is a popular storytelling framework that’s been used ever since humans could communicate with drawings on cave walls. Using this template is one of the most effective ways to integrate storytelling into your presentations. So, try making them the hero, not your product.

Keep it simple

Keep the amount of information you give the prospect down to a few important things. Don’t burry the resources they need to see with lots of little insignificant things. Don’t get bogged down in feature explanations. Keep things brief and high-level. If you have to ask yourself if you should cut a section, the answer is yes.

Avoid animations (unless they’re custom)

As a general rule, when animations in presentations are good, they’re really good. When they’re bad, though, they’re really bad. I have seen some beautiful animations done in PowerPoint for large-scale conference presentations. Important note: they were created by a trained graphic designer with weeks of prep time and years of experience.

If you don’t have time or expertise to make your animations great, keep them simple and minimal. Or avoid them altogether. The animation presets in modern presentation tools are guaranteed to make your content look cheap.

The occasional fade-in can be tasteful. But beyond that, it’s probably wise to stay away from any distracting spins, swipes, or bounces.

Rehearse on your target machine

This tip is more about technology than technique. I can’t count how many times I’ve been in the audience of a presentation where the presenter advances to a broken or unformatted slide. “Whoa,” they say. “That’s so weird. That worked on my computer.”

Perhaps you’ve experienced the same thing. It’s definitely not something you want your prospect experiencing as they’re forming their opinion of your brand.

So, if you’re building a presentation on your home PC to transfer to your work laptop, make sure you test it on your work laptop before unveiling to the world. It seems obvious, but it takes mere minutes to troubleshoot and could save you a sale and a stressful situation.

Start with a template

A great way to ensure aesthetic consistency and alignment is a custom template. One that’s designed with your organization’s branding. If you don’t have an in-house designer, there will be an initial investment. But it’s well worth it considering it may be the first impression a prospect gets of your brand. As well as, how many eyeballs will be on your slides over time.

This will help you avoid the distraction of mismatched fonts and colors. But this will also help you ensure that every prospect gets a consistent experience, regardless of the presenter. Nothing is left up to chance.

Almost every modern presentation software has a “New from Template” or equivalent option. These save time during the start of each slide deck as well. Branded templates mean you’re never left wondering if your team has the right content.

Speaking of saving time, Accent Connect keeps all of your presentation decks neatly organized and updated. Your sales reps can access them from any device, anywhere, at any time.

To learn more about how we can help you optimize your presentation workflow and sell more effectively, reach out to our team today for a live demo .

By Accent Technologies

12th june 2020.

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The Best Presentation Software for 2021

On average a presentation takes up to 20 minutes and experts say we make an impression within the first 30 seconds. That is why it’s important to “dress” our great product/idea with an equally exciting design. Most often, presentations are cooked up by non-designers, which creates a specific need – for powerful presentation software, which can help communicate a message beautifully, effectively, and to suit any user’s skill level. We hand-picked 15 of the best presentation software for 2021 , which will help you create presentations online, share them, while shining in your best light. In the meanwhile, check out some useful ideas tips to spice up your presentations .

A web-based presentation tool, which means you can access your presentations wherever you are, with an internet connection. It is known for its animations, cartoons, and infographics, which help the user to create more interactive presentations and explainer-style videos.

Example by Focusky

Best Features:  Very interactive; you can create a unique to your story by combining different “frames” (slides); create your own animations within the presentation Price:  Free, but heavily subscription-based Learning curve:  Very intuitive, nicely organized by categories, but it would require some time to learn the animation controls Available for:  Online Perfect for: Marketing and education

To summarize, this presentation tool is best for marketers and education, where the creator can get the most out of the cool animation and cartoons available. In the last years, there is an increased interest in Powtoon and RenderForest and we expect that more and more people will use them in 2021. No surprise – if you look at our article about Graphic Design Trends in 2022 , everything is moving towards animation, cool 3D-s, cartoons, and illustrations – and these are all things that this software can offer for your presentation.

Prezi is an online presentation software, which resembles a mind map. In comparison, PowerPoint offers a linear way of presenting, whereas Prezi allows you to better show relationships between different elements of your presentation, show details, zoom in and zoom out and show an overall view of your topic. Compared to PowerPoint is more interactive, but with fewer functionalities and a choice of templates.

Example by PreziBase

Best Features:  Interactive presentations and interesting transitions, zoom in/out details Price:  The very basic features are free, but most of the interesting ones are paid, starting from $3/month and reaching up to $59/month. They offer a free trial. Learning curve:  it requires learning and going through a lot of menus and functionalities, similar to PowerPoint Available for:  Online / Limited use for iOS and Android (only viewing, not creating and editing) Perfect for: teachers, businesses, more experienced designers, and specific presentations needs, but not recommended for newbies

Prezi is best in showing relationships between different parts of your presentations. There are some challenges in editing, and viewing across devices and its best features are paid for. We recommend it for quick, mind-map-like presentations without the need for ultra-special design.

3. RenderForest Presentation Maker

RenderForest is an online presentation tool, which is famous for its explainer style and whiteboard animations. The presentation templates often offer various motion/video backgrounds, which helps to grab your audience’s attention. Currently, the company is working on releasing its Graphic Design Software, which will allow users to create printables and beautiful designs for social media. This shows that RenderForest’s team knows the market well and does its best to cater to its needs!

what is presentation software used for

Example by Renderforest

Best Features:  Video holders with text on shapes, cool transitions Price:  There is a free version, the paid ones start at $20.34 per user/month Learning curve:  Relatively easy to use, the simple interface helps the user Available for:  Online / iOS / Android Perfect for:  Education and business

Although not one of the cheapest solutions, it allows you to create engaging and interactive presentations with lots of cool animations. That makes RenderForest a great choice for more educational and marketing explainer-type videos/presentations.

4. Mentimeter

Mentimeter is a very interesting online presentation software. It allows your audience to engage with your presentation in real-time and you can create polls, ask questions, which are then displayed to your presentation. The answers from the audience remain anonymous so people are even more encouraged to participate.

Example by Mentimeter

Best Features:  Launch live, interactive polls, surveys, quizzes and create things like word clouds in real-time Price:  It has a free version, but the paid plans offer most of the attractive features – the basic plan costs $9.99 per user/month and the more advanced plan is $24.99 per user/month Learning curve:  Easy to use; might need to explain to a less tech-savvy audience how to connect to your presentation Available for:  Online / Android / iOS Perfect for:  Educators, speakers, business and competitions

An excellent choice for educators, speakers, and businesses who want to engage the audience in real-time and display the results immediately. Clean, simple designs, that help you focus on the content.

5. Libre Office Impress

Libre Office is free presentation software, an open-source alternative to PowerPoint. As you can expect from a free product, it offers only the main features of its “big brother”, but it’s a good solution for people used to Microsoft’s productivity suite. The interface is very similar to PowerPoint, which again makes it comfortable to use for a certain audience. Users who need collaboration on presentations, clean interface, and more creative design solutions should steer away from this free presentation software because it will simply not cover their needs.

what is presentation software used for

Example by Theodoros Bousios

Best Features:  Free, compatible with older versions (Windows XP for example) Price:  Free Learning curve:  It will take some time to go through all the options and to get familiar with the interface; Available for:  Windows / macOS / Linux / Android / iOS. Perfect for:  people who want to use a free product and people with older operation systems

To summarize, Libre is free, compatible with older versions, it can cover your basic needs for a presentation, but the options are too many and available templates too little.

6. Zoho Show

Zoho Show is also an online presentation software, which has a very friendly user interface and great collaboration features. There are many functionalities, which help you create a beautiful design, but require some time and design knowledge to get it right. The premade templates are limited and this presentation software needs an internet connection to be able to edit and present.

what is presentation software used for

Image by Zoho

Best Features:  Live broadcasting a presentation with live chat and commenting Price:  Zoho Show is free for personal use. For business users, Zoho Show is included in the Zoho Docs enterprise pricing packages – €5 or €8 per user/month Learning curve: Available for:  Online / Android / iOS Perfect for:  non-profits, start-ups, personal use, teachers

To summarize, Zoho offers great collaboration features, but you need a connection to edit and present. It is suitable for quick, non-pretentious presentations, where you need some kind of collaboration.

7. ClearSlide Presenter

ClearSlide is a sales engagement platform, including an online presentation tool. Another online tool – SlideRocket, was acquired by ClearSlide and one of the differences is that ClearSlide is more costly and targeted at larger businesses. It’s a great platform for very specific needs – collaborating between sales and marketing teams, to achieve the company’s goals. It’s clear even by the interface:

what is presentation software used for

Image by ClearSlide

Best Features: Analytics for costumers’ engagement, video conferencing, screen sharing Price:  They offer a free trial and you can see more about the payment plans here. Learning curve:  Clear and simple interface, but it requires some time to get used to the tools Available for:  Online Perfect for: Sales/business, managers (for coaching); not suitable for newbies, teachers, students

To summarize, ClearSide is perfect for presenting sales pitch , graphics, collaborate in larger teams. It is somehow restrictive for a non-designer because the templates are specific.

8. Piktochart

Piktochart allows you to make infographics, presentations, and printables quickly. Primarily known for its easy customizable infographics, Piktochart also has simple presentation templates and the company is constantly trying to update its library.

Example by Piktochart Knowledge Base

Best Features:  Turning data-heavy content into simple visuals; nice transitions between slides Price:  There is a free version and a paid one, starting at $29 per user/month. They offer a free trial. Learning curve:  It requires time to get used to the options available and to navigate through Available for:  Online Perfect for:  Designers, teachers; it does not offer collaboration options, which might be needed by teams, students, etc.

Compared to other online presentation software is a bit costly and we could still ask a bit more from the presentation templates. We’d recommend it to someone who often uses infographics and wants to use a single platform to combine the infographics with a presentation. But why not check our free infographics as well?

Slides is online presentation software, initially aimed at developers and covering their presentation needs. Thus said, it does not offer offline editing, but you can present offline, after exporting your presentation.

Best Features:  It allows you to use your phone as a remote control; Live Present Mode allows you to control what your audience sees; drop in code, iframes, and SVGs with ease. Price:  Free, with paid plans starting at $7.00/month and $14-$18/month for pro and team packages. They offer a free trial. Learning curve:  friendly interface, but too many functions and options, which might overwhelm the average user and beginner Available for: Online Perfect for:  developers, designers, a little bit too specific for newbies

To summarize, it’s a very cool tool, giving you complete design freedom, but that is also why we do not recommend it to teachers, non-designers, or marketers. Developers and design gurus will love it.

Canva is a web-based solution that started with a mission – to make beautiful designed content available to everyone. The whole platform is organized so that a person without any prior design knowledge can easily create graphs, images, and presentations to impress. Although it is not the best tool for data visualization, it scores high in any other category. Needless to say, it has become a popular choice amongst non-designers.

Image by Iconfinder

Best Features:  Plenty of beautiful templates to choose from and Canva school has plenty of tutorials and tips for free. It offers more free functionalities compared to other competitors. Price:  Free, the offer different subscription plans, starting at $9.95 per user/month Learning curve:  Very easy to use, most of the actions can be performed by drag-and-drop Available for:  Online / iOS / Android Perfect for:  newbies, marketers (who need a unified look across all their social media), non-profits, and teachers

Canva is becoming one of the most popular tools amongst non-designers for creating beautiful unified content. You can create entire presentations, flyers, and other materials with a single drag and drop.

11. Slidebean

Slidebean is the go-to online presentation software for last-minute projects, that look original and professional. Slidebean offers clean and easy-to-use templates and keeps track of your audience’s engagement.

Source Slidebean

Best Features:  It allows you to arrange your content with the help of AI, which saves time creating a beautiful layout. You just pick a template, upload content, and let the AI offer you a nice layout. Premade animations, effects, and alignments are automatically applied to your content and create a cohesive look. Price:  Free, paid versions starting from $8/month Learning curve:  very easy to use since everything is made to fit the premade templates Available for:  Windows / Mac / Android / iOS Perfect for:  financial, academic, pitch, marketing, sales; everything quick with a clear structure

To summarize, if you are in a hurry, Slidebean will offer several layouts for your slides and speed up the process of creation. The platform targets primarily sales, marketing, and financial fields, and the available templates reflect that.

12. Google Slides

Google Slides is part of the G Suite business application. Its popularity has increased in the last years since it’s a web-based platform, allowing you to store, edit, and share your presentation, without the need of installing presentation software on your computer. All you need is a Google account and you are good to go.

Image by G Suite Updates blog

Best Features:  It’s free for personal use, and offers great paid features for business – for example, seamless collaboration and commenting on a presentation, converting other presentations to Google Slides. Some other great features are the wide variety of fonts available (GoogleFonts, not need installing), easy embedding, plus it’s super intuitive and easy to use! Price:   It’s free for individual use. For business use, the price starts at $5/user/month and plans of $10 and $25/user/month, for unlimited cloud storage and extra features Learning curve:  Simple interface, but it will require some time to pick up. Similar to PowerPoint, only a bit lighter. Available for:  Windows / Mac / Online Perfect for:  businesses, freelancers, who need a user-friendly app with elementary features; great for collaborating teams, not so perfect for complex designs and tools, required by big enterprises

Perfect for personal use, well synchronized across different devices, similar to PowerPoint. Maybe you are a teacher and you like GoogleSlides because it is free and easy to use? Well, we’ve gathered some awesome FREE GoogleSlides and PowerPoint templates , specially made for education needs.

If you need something along the lines of PowerPoint but need the option for collaboration – a paid plan for GoogleSlides is your go-to choice.

13. Keynote

Keynote is an Apple product, very similar to Google Slides. All you need to do is create an iCloud account (similar to a Google account) and start using Keynote from there. Running Keynote on Windows also requires an internet connection and a modern browser. The latest version can also import and export PowerPoint formats if needed. All this sends Keynote higher in the list regarding the accessibility and shareability of this presentation software.

what is presentation software used for

Image by Envato tuts+

Best Features:  Simplicity of design, great drag and drop functions, polished transitions and animations, easy image editing/cropping; works great with multimedia; design templates with better aesthetic than an average slide deck; Price:  Free for macOS and iOS Learning curve:  Pretty easy to use for Mac users, a bit of learning curve for users, having experience with other software. Available for:  Mac / Windows / Online Perfect for:  businesses, marketers, people with not much of a design experience

Bottom line, if you are a Mac user, you love the sleek design and you are looking for cool aesthetics – Keynote is simple to use and free, why not use it?

14. Adobe Spark

Adobe Spark is a web and mobile-based media creation application, which helps you create social graphics, short videos, and web pages. What is immediately noticeable is the clean, crisp, simple, and modern designs, which focus you on the content. If you are looking for a funky, ornate design – Adobe Spark is not the right pick for you.

Example by Cikeys

Best Features:  Beautiful templates, user-friendly interface, step-by-step creation, you can add audio to your slides (narrating) Price:  There is a free version, the paid on starts at $9.79. The best templates, as with the competitors, are paid. They do not offer a free trial. Learning curve:  Easy to use Available for:  Online / iOS / Android Perfect for:  quick presentations, teachers, basic presentations without jamming them with too much cool stuff.

Adobe Spark eliminates the cluster of design options and leads you step-by-step in creating elegant, simple presentations. Ideal for basic presentations, not the best for sales and marketing.

15. PowerPoint

PowerPoint certainly is a “classic” – it’s has been the most popular tool for creating presentations so far. What first started as a component of the Microsoft Office suite, now has improved shareability and accessibility. It can be used on the web (as part of Office on the web), works with Android, and iOS, and there is a Mobile app, as well as presentation software for mac.

Example by Abris DC

Best Features:  Many people are familiar with the software, a wide variety of templates; improved accessibility across platforms; extensive tools and options Price: If you want to enjoy the full features of PowerPoint, you’ll need to subscribe to Microsoft 365 – they have payment plans for personal or business use. The price for personal use starts at $5.99/month or $59.99/year, and business plans start at $12.50 per user/month with an annual commitment. You can find more information here . The mobile applications are completely free to use, of course with some limitations. You can compare the available features across different platforms  here. Learning curve: Due to the variety of options and the complexity of the menus, it might take some time to master all of its features. Something that could take a lot of time is editing the text, arranging the visuals, and picking the right transitions – overall, is time-consuming. Still, the interface remained easy to navigate over time and if you trust your design sense, you can achieve satisfying results. Available for: Windows / Mac / Online Perfect for: business, medical, accounting and students; creating concise presentations; but not so suitable for teachers, educators, start-ups and marketers who want to create more interactive and story-based presentations.

To this date, PowerPoint is keeping the lead as the most popular tool for creating presentations. Some of the downsides are that sometimes it can be time-consuming to come up with a good design and PP doesn’t offer collaboration tools and compared to other platforms. But we have a solution for at least one of your problems – we’ve selected 31 Modern PowerPoint templates to set the right tone for your presentation. 

We made a quick summary for you…

Ok, not that we’ve looked at the 15 best presentation software for 2021, we decided to go one step further and compare them by price and popularity. Let’s have a look first at the new-comers:

what is presentation software used for

As you can see, the leaders from the uprising platforms are Canva and Mentimeter, with relatively low prices and with huge success amongst users . Powtoon, Piktochart, and Renderforest are a bit costly , but they are popular since they offer a lot of animation and interactive elements. Hey, but maybe some of the other tools are right for you? We encourage you to go on their websites, contact their support team, and see what they have to offer.

Then, let’s see how the veterans are ranking:

what is presentation software used for

It’s no surprise that PowerPoint and Google Slides are at the top – people are used to their products, have familiar interfaces, and offer a lot of functionalities at a good price. Although, for quick, unpretentious results, their competitors are a very attractive solution.

Final words

We can conclude that there are many useful tools to help you create beautiful presentations. Some of them are well-known and have been here for a while, while others are uprising… No matter the case, we notice a trend for presentation tools catering not only to the designers’ needs but also to the newbies, marketers, and teachers. That way, enabling everyone to create stunning presentations in no time and share them easily.

We hope this presentation software list shed some light on different options out there and that we helped you evaluate quickly what would work for your situation best.

You may also be interested in these related articles:

  • 12 PowerPoint Presentation Tips To Dramatically Boost Your Efficiency
  • 35 Free Google Slides Infographic Templates to Grab Now
  • 23 Online Collaboration Tools for Your Remote Team

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Bilyana Nikolaeva

Bilyana is an inspiring content writer and illustrator at GraphicMama with years of experience in art and design. When she’s not busy writing for the blog, you will usually see her working hard on new illustrations and graphic resources.

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The 10 Best Presentation Software for 2023: Complete Guide

There are literally hundreds of presentation software tools in the market today and keeping track is getting increasingly hard. Most of them have been optimized for a specific purpose or type of user from a wide range of possibilities, and it's very likely that THE ideal tool for you is actually one that you've never heard of.

We've created this best presentation software list to shed some light and to give you a comprehensive presentation software list to ensure you make the right call in the platform you select. This article is the result of several weeks of research and review of 50+ presentation tools currently available on the web.

What is a presentation software?

A presentation software is defined as an application built to display information in the form of a slide show. Any presentation tool must have three fundamental functions:

  • ‍ A text editor: to input the contents of the presentation.
  • ‍ An import function: to insert and manipulate images and other content.
  • ‍A slide-show or presenter mode: that displays the content in a nice, formatted way, sometimes synced in real time with the presenter across devices.

Slide shows often consist of a combination of text, video, images and charts. Their primary function is displaying clear, readable and summarized data to an audience.

Most presentations are shared and presented on a larger screen or through a digital projector. In rare occasions, slide presentations are printed out as a replacement for text documents, but this is a really inefficient way to review data, that Garr Reynolds calls ‘ PresDocs ’ (Garr Reynolds is the author of Presentation Zen, one of the most important go-to reference for successful presentations).

Related Read: What Makes Up the Best Presentation Templates?

What makes a good presentation tool?

The functions and results of presentation programs have evolved significantly in the past decades, since the original launch of ‘Presenter’ (the PowerPoint predecessor) in 1984. In 1987 PowerPoint 1.0 was released for the Macintosh and it started a revolution in the way we prepare and consume content in meetings.

For the purposes of this article we are going to classify all presentation tools using 3 variables that we consider extremely important:

Ease of use: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

This rating looks at the learning curve, or time required to learn to use the platform. An easy to use interface is fundamentally important to ensure that users feel confortable working with the platform and doesn’t require complex training to take advantage of its features. This also accounts for the average time it takes to build a presentation.

Customization: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

The ability to customize a presentation to the smallest details. This varies depending on the number of advanced features in the platform, like the ability to set different transitions to each slide, the ability to add customized elements or to design/code the final outcome of the slides to the last font size and color code.

Final result: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

This indicator looks at the outcome of a finished presentation, assuming the user is an average person with basic design skills and intermediate knowledge on the tool itself.

Best PowerPoint Alternatives (Death by Power Point)

As we mentioned before, PowerPoint is the most used presentation builder in the market today. It is distributed by Microsoft as part of their Office Suite, which is estimated to have over 500 million users worldwide. Microsoft has also revealed that approximately 35 Million presentations are delivered every single day, that’s a staggering 400 presentations per second.

what is presentation software used for

But still, PowerPoint’s popularity has decreased significantly in the past few years. Their boring presentation templates, the large learning curve and complexity as well as the terrible slides many users end up making have started the Death to PowerPoint movement.

What presentation software is better than PowerPoint?

For this section, we summarize the top PowerPoint alternatives and examples, that is, presentation tools that work in a fairly similar manner and that provide similar (but significantly better) results. If you are an avid PowerPoint user, then migrating to these platforms should be rather easy for you.

Best 10 presentation software alternative list for 2023

(Updated December 2022)

  • Keynote presentation
  • Google Slides

1- SLIDEBEAN PRESENTATION SOFTWARE

Ease of use: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ - Fantastic!

Customization: ★ ★ ★ ★ - Very Good

Final result: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ - Fantastic!

what is presentation software used for

Slidebean is an online presentation tool that uses artificial intelligence to design beautiful slides. Simply add content blocks to your presentation without worrying about formatting. Slidebean’s AI finds the best possible design for every element on your slide. This level of automation allows you to create a professional looking presentation in a fraction of the time it normally takes on PowerPoint.

When comparing it to PowerPoint, Slidebean’s interface is much easier to learn and work with, and it lets you create fantastic looking presentations really fast. The platform is web based and allows you to export to both PowerPoint and PDF format. It also lets you track viewer interactions and activity from people you share your slides with!

Slidebean also has a unique advantage which is a rich gallery of presentation outline templates. These are pre-filled decks that work for numerous purposes, like business proposals, classroom decks, thesis presentations and even startup pitch decks : all you need to do is import them and fill in your content.

You can sign up free for Slidebean here

SIGN UP FREE

2- apple keynote.

Ease of use: ★ ★ ★ - OK

Customization: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ - Fantastic!

Final result: ★ ★ ★ ★ - Very Good

what is presentation software used for

Keynote is what PowerPoint should have been all along. Apple's version of the popular presentation tool has improved significantly in the last few years, and has recently included a cloud version that works on any browser on any computer (as long as you have at least one Apple device).

Keynote is basically an improved PowerPoint, it offers the same approach to creating slides, but offers nice and clean customizable templates, a simple interface and great details like smart guides.

The biggest issue with Keynote is the long learning process that it requires. Similar to Microsoft's tool, you'll need to sit down for a few hours to learn to use the platform, and another larger set of hours to make a professional presentation.

More info about Apple Keynote is available here

Final result: ★ ★ ★ - OK

Visme is a web based platform for building presentations. Their familiar interface is similar to PowerPoint, but they have successfully simplified a complex UI to a nicer and more understandable navigation. Still, you'll need to spend a few hours to get a good grasp of where all the customization options can be found.

what is presentation software used for

The platform offers an interesting (but certainly limited) gallery of images, but they succeed at delivering beautiful infographic elements (which they call ‘Charts and Graphs’) that you can use to add some color and make your slides much more dynamic.

You can read more about them here . ‍

4- GOOGLE SLIDES

Customization: ★ ★ - Passable

what is presentation software used for

Google's version of PowerPoint is hosted as part of the Google Apps suite, that you can access from Google Drive or from Google Apps for Work. Sadly, their presentation builder feels like a limited version of PowerPoint, with less features, limited fonts and very little customization options.

Still, Google's platform is available for free, has a lot of integrations and probably one of the best online collaboration systems out there. Checking it out is easy, just visit your Google Drive.

You can find a more detailed review here .

5- FLOWVELLA

Ease of use: ★ ★ - Passable

Customization: ★ ★ ★ - OK

what is presentation software used for

Flowvella is available on the Mac App Store as a desktop application. It provides a simple interface (certainly cleaner than Microsoft PowerPoint and somewhat similar to Apple Keynote) and some very nice design templates, which set good grounds so you can start building a nice looking set of slides on top of them. This is by far their biggest strength! If you want to start from scratch, however, you might feel a little lost creating something that looks good.

We found, however, that the oversimplified interface makes some basic options hard to find, like changing the color of a shape. Also, while running as a desktop app it still requires an Internet connection to download some elements, which can lead to a slower performance than a 100% desktop tool.

Update: We also read recently that they launched a tvOS app for the new AppleTV, making them, as far as we know, the first presentation tool to leverage the new platform.

You can find more details here .

Customization: ★ ★ ★ -

what is presentation software used for

Pitch offers an innovative solution for fast-paced teams looking to quickly create effective, stylish presentations. With a combination of productivity features and design elements, Pitch makes it easy to get professional results—quickly

You can find more information about them here .

Final result: ★ ★ ★ ★ - Very Good!

what is presentation software used for

The premise of Canva is an ‘amazingly easy graphic design software'. It lets you create anything from print design to banners and presentations. They provide an easy to use interface with a huge selection of pre-built designs that you can modify to your liking.

These pre-built elements let you quickly draft a nice presentation even if you have no design skills, but it does require you to drag and drop and arrange the content of your slide, which can become time consuming.

Canva has been gaining significant popularity in the last few years, especially after they hired Guy Kawasaki as a Chief Evangelist. Their platform is beautiful, you can find more about them here .

8- HAIKU DECK

Ease of use: ★ ★ ★ ★ - Very Good

what is presentation software used for

Haiku Deck launched as an iPad app in 2011. They made a big bet towards mobile productivity and came up with a solid iPad application that allowed you to create slides in less time than the then-only alternative of Keynote for iOS.

Haiku Deck has a nice set of custom templates that you can use as a guideline for your slides, and their content input system is clear and easy to learn.

Still, we believe their approach that focused on mobile devices could only take them so far and they've since been working on a web version of their platform that works for any computer. As we mentioned, the personal computer continues to be a much more efficient productivity platform.

what is presentation software used for

'Slides' is a nice website that lets you create and share presentations online. Formerly slides(dot)io and slid(dot)es, they finally settled for slides(dot)com. This startup was founded by Hakim El Hattab and Owen Bossola in Stockholm, Sweden, and it makes use of the reveal.js framework that we mentioned above.

Slides has a nice web interface that encourages you to create a nice and clean presentations, however, it still depends on the user’s ability to manipulate the elements and arrange them in a nice style. Still, their pre-defined formats and their grid system help guide you to a better result.

The platform also allows for custom HTML and CSS coding, which lets experienced users with coding skills, customize their templates even further.

Some more info about them here .

Ease of use: ★ - Bad

what is presentation software used for

Prezi has been around for years and they have had a huge head start compared to any other online presentation tool out there. Their unique zoom styling makes it immediately obvious to the audience that they are looking at a Prezi deck.

Prezi has the advantage of allowing you to create really stunning interactive presentations if you know how to leverage their zoomable, infinite canvas. However, this can become a double edge sword if users overuse the feature and come up with a presentation that is literally capable of making people dizzy.

Still, Prezi's biggest weakness is on its ease of use. There's a long learning curve towards dominating their interface and even if you do, you need to be a designer to make a great presentation on the platform.

This is a huge company that is not going away anytime soon. With 50+ million users, they have proven the world wants and needs a PowerPoint alternative, and we have huge respect for them for doing so.

More information about them here .

‍Which one to pick?

In the world of presentation software, there's a big bunch to pick from. It's kind of like a crowded market with lots of options. And guess what? The best one for you might not even be on your radar.

Our list is here to help you out. We've put together this bunch of presentation software choices after digging into over 50 of them on the internet. We're here to give you the scoop on what's out there, so you can pick the one that suits you best.

Now, remember, presentation software is like your helper to make cool slideshows. These slideshows could be for showing stuff to people, like at school or work. These helpers, or software, should be good at a few things: putting words and pictures on slides, making things look nice, and showing your stuff in a cool way on a screen.

The options we've found have different things they're good at. Some use fancy computer thinking (AI) to make your slides look great without you doing much. Others let you customize your slides a lot, which is nice if you want them to look exactly like you want. And finally, how your slides look when you're done is super important too.

Picking the right presentation tool is a bit like picking the best tool for a job. You wouldn't use a hammer to write a story, right? So, whether you want something easy, something that lets you be creative, or something that gives you good results, our list has got you covered. Your choice will help you make cool presentations that people will remember. Our recommendation is to give Slidebean a try, but is up to you to consider the options. So, pick smart and happy presenting.

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Prezi is good for business

Keep teams engaged and customers asking for more

what is presentation software used for

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Millions of people — from students to CEOs — use Prezi to grab attention, stand out, and capture imaginations

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The most engaging presentations happen on Prezi

what is presentation software used for

Create with confidence

Professionally designed templates.

Choose from hundreds of modern, beautifully made templates.

Millions of reusable presentations

Focus on your own creativity and build off, remix, and reuse presentations from our extensive content library.

Real creative freedom

Open canvas.

Create, organize, and move freely on an open canvas. Create seamless presentations without the restrictions of linear slides.

Ready-made asset libraries

Choose from millions of images, stickers, GIFs, and icons from Unsplash and Giphy.

what is presentation software used for

A presentation that works for you

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Your own ideas, ready to present faster

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The best presentation software in 2024

These powerpoint alternatives go beyond the basics..

Hero image with logos of the best presentation software

The latest presentation apps have made it easier than ever to format slides and create professional-looking slideshows without giving off a "this is a template" vibe. Even standard PowerPoint alternatives have updated key features to make it easier than ever to collaborate and create presentations quickly, so you can spend more time prepping for your actual presentation.

If, like me, you've used Google Slides unquestioningly for years, it's a whole new world out there. The newest crop of online presentation tools go way beyond the classic slideshow experience, with new features to keep your audience's attention, streamline the creation process with AI, and turn slide decks into videos and interactive conversations.

I've been testing these apps for the past few years, and this time, I spent several days tinkering with 25 of the top presentation software solutions out there to bring you the best of the best.

The best presentation software

What makes the best presentation app, how we evaluate and test apps.

When looking for the best presentation apps, I wanted utility players. After all, slideshows are used for just about everything, from pitch decks and product launches to class lectures and church sermons. With that in mind, here's what I was looking for:

Pre-built templates. The best presentation tools should have attractive, professional-looking templates to build presentations in a hurry.

Sharing and collaboration options. Whether you plan to share your webinar slides later, or you just want to collaborate with a coworker on a presentation, it should be easy to share files and collaborate in real-time.

Flexibility and customization options. Templates are great, but top presentation apps should enable you to customize just about everything—giving you the flexibility to build exactly what you need.

Affordability. Creating compelling presentations is important, but you shouldn't have to bust your budget to make it happen. With capable free tools on the market, affordability is a top consideration.

Standalone functionality. There's no reason to use multiple tools when one can do it all, so I didn't test any apps that require and work on top of another presentation app like PowerPoint or Google Slides.

Familiar, deck-based interface. For our purposes here, I only tested software that uses slides, with the familiar deck-based editor you expect from a "presentation" tool (versus, for example, a video creation app).

Beyond that, I also looked for presentation apps that brought something unique to the table—features above and beyond what you can get for free from a legacy solution like PowerPoint or Google Slides.

Here's what my testing workflow looked like:

I went through any onboarding or guided tutorials.

I created a new deck, scanning through all available templates, noting how well-designed they were (and which were free versus paid).

I added new slides, deleted slides, edited text and images, and played around with other content types.

I changed presentation design settings, like color schemes and background images.

I reviewed and tested the sharing and collaboration options.

I tested out presenter view (when available).

After my first round of testing, I went back into the top performers to test any unique or niche features, like AI, brand settings, and interactive content. With that, these are the best presentation apps I found—each one really brings something different or radically easy to the table.

The best presentation software at a glance

The best free presentation software, .css-yjptlz-link{all:unset;box-sizing:border-box;-webkit-text-decoration:underline;text-decoration:underline;cursor:pointer;-webkit-transition:all 300ms ease-in-out;transition:all 300ms ease-in-out;outline-offset:1px;-webkit-text-fill-color:currentcolor;outline:1px solid transparent;}.css-yjptlz-link[data-color='ocean']{color:#3d4592;}.css-yjptlz-link[data-color='ocean']:hover{color:#2b2358;}.css-yjptlz-link[data-color='ocean']:focus{color:#3d4592;outline-color:#3d4592;}.css-yjptlz-link[data-color='white']{color:#fffdf9;}.css-yjptlz-link[data-color='white']:hover{color:#a8a5a0;}.css-yjptlz-link[data-color='white']:focus{color:#fffdf9;outline-color:#fffdf9;}.css-yjptlz-link[data-color='primary']{color:#3d4592;}.css-yjptlz-link[data-color='primary']:hover{color:#2b2358;}.css-yjptlz-link[data-color='primary']:focus{color:#3d4592;outline-color:#3d4592;}.css-yjptlz-link[data-color='secondary']{color:#fffdf9;}.css-yjptlz-link[data-color='secondary']:hover{color:#a8a5a0;}.css-yjptlz-link[data-color='secondary']:focus{color:#fffdf9;outline-color:#fffdf9;}.css-yjptlz-link[data-weight='inherit']{font-weight:inherit;}.css-yjptlz-link[data-weight='normal']{font-weight:400;}.css-yjptlz-link[data-weight='bold']{font-weight:700;} canva (web, windows, mac, android, ios).

Canva, our pick for the best free presentation app

Canva pros:

Excellent free plan

Tons of amazing templates for all use cases

Feature-rich

Canva cons:

The AI tools aren't groundbreakingly useful

Canva offers one of the most robust free plans of all the presentation apps I tested. The app delays account creation until after you've created your first design, so you can get started building your presentation in seconds. Choose from an almost overwhelming number of beautiful templates (nearly all available for free), including those designed specifically for education or business use cases.

Anyone who's accidentally scrolled too far and been bumped to the next slide will appreciate Canva's editor interface, which eliminates that problem altogether with a smooth scroll that doesn't jump around. Choose from a handful of preset animations to add life to your presentations, or browse the library of audio and video files available to add. And Canva also has a number of options for sharing your presentation, including adding collaborators to your team, sharing directly to social media, and even via QR code.

Present directly from Canva, and let audience members submit their questions via Canva Live. Once you share a link to invite audience members to your presentation, they can send questions for you to answer. As the presenter, you'll see them pop up in your presenter view window, so you can keep the audience engaged and your presentation clear. Alternatively, record a presentation with a talking head bubble—you can even use an AI presenter here—to share remotely.

Canva pricing: Free plan available; paid plans start at $120/year for 1 user and include additional features like Brand Kit, premium templates and stock assets, and additional AI-powered design tools.

The best presentation app for AI-powered design

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Beautiful.ai pros:

True AI design

No fussing around with alignment

Still allows for customization

Beautiful.ai cons:

No free plan

If you're like me, editing granular spacing issues is the absolute worst part of building a presentation. Beautiful.ai uses artificial intelligence to take a lot of the hassle and granular design requirements out of the presentation process, so you can focus on the content of a presentation without sacrificing professional design. If I needed to make presentations on a regular basis, this is the app I'd use.

Many apps have recently added AI design features, but Beautiful.ai has been doing it for years—and they've perfected the experience of AI design, ensuring the tool's reign as the most streamlined and user-friendly option for AI design.

The editor is a little different from most presentation apps, but it's still intuitive—and you'll start off with a quick two-minute tutorial. When creating a new slide, scroll through "inspiration slides" to find a layout you like; once you choose, the app will pull the layout and automatically adapt it to match the design of the rest of your presentation.

With 10 themes, several templated slides, over 40 fully-designed templates, and more than 20 different color palettes to choose from, Beautiful.ai strikes a perfect balance between automation and customization.

While Beautiful.ai doesn't offer a free plan, paid plans are reasonably priced and offer sharing and collaboration options that rival collab-focused apps like Google Slides. And speaking of Google, you can connect Beautiful.ai with Google Drive to save all your presentations there.

Note: I re-tested the generative AI feature (called DesignerBot) this year. It's great for adding individual slides to an existing presentation—automatically choosing the best layout and matching the design to the rest of the deck—but as with most other apps, it struggled to pull in relevant images.

Beautiful.ai pricing: Plans start at $12/month for unlimited slides, AI content generation, viewer analytics, and more. Upgrade to a Team plan for $40/user/month to get extra collaboration and workspace features and custom brand controls.

The best presentation app for conversational presentations

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Prezi pros:

Doesn't restrict you to standard presentation structure

Lots of customization options

Prezi Video lets you display a presentation right over your webcam video

Prezi cons:

Steep learning curve

Struggling to squeeze information into a basic, linear presentation? Give Prezi a try. Unlike nearly all other presentation apps on the market, Prezi Present doesn't restrict the structure of your presentation to a straight line. The editor focuses on topics and subtopics and allows you to arrange them any way you want, so you can create a more conversational flow of information.

With the structural flexibility, you still get all the same customization features you expect from top presentation software, including fully-editable templates. There's a learning curve if you're unfamiliar with non-linear presentations, but templates offer a great jumping-off point, and Prezi's editor does a good job of making the process more approachable.

Plus, Prezi comes with two other apps: Prezi Design and Prezi Video. Prezi Video helps you take remote presentations to a new level. You can record a video where the presentation elements are displayed right over your webcam feed. Record and save the video to share later, or connect with your video conferencing tool of choice (including Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and Google Meet) to present live.

Prezi's generative AI feature works ok, but it's more useful as a wireframe. When I asked it to create a presentation about the Stanley Cup Playoffs, for example, the resulting content read a lot like a student writing a term paper in the broadest strokes possible to avoid doing any actual research.

The best presentation app for video presentations

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Powtoon pros:

Timing automatically changes based on the content on the slide

Can toggle between slideshow and video

Can orient presentation as horizontal, vertical, or square

Powtoon cons:

Limited free plan

Powtoon makes it easy to create engaging videos by orienting the editor around a slide deck. Editing a Powtoon feels just like editing a presentation, but by the time you finish, you have a professional video. 

You can edit your slides at any time, and when you hit play, a video plays through your deck—the feel is almost like an animated explainer video. Each slide includes the animations you choose and takes up as much time as is needed based on the content on the slide. Powtoon figures the timing automatically, and you can see in the bottom-right of the editor how much time is used on your current slide versus the total presentation. If you ever want to present as a slide deck, just toggle between Slideshow and Movie.

You'll likely need to subscribe to a paid plan to get the most out of Powtoon—like creating videos longer than three minutes, downloading them as MP4 files, and white-labeling your presentations—but doing so won't break the bank. Plus, you'll unlock tons of templates complete with animations and soundtracks.

One of my favorite Powtoon features is the ability to orient your video: you can choose horizontal orientation (like a normal presentation) or opt for vertical (for mobile) or square (for social media). When your presentation is ready, you can publish straight to YouTube, Wistia, Facebook Ads, and any number of other locations.

The best presentation app for collaborating with your team

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Pitch, our pick for the best presentation software for collaborating with your team

Pitch pros:

Google levels of collaboration

Assign slides to specific team members

Excellent generative AI feature

Pitch cons:

User interface is a little different than you're used to

Need to collaborate on presentations with your team? Pitch is a Google Slides alternative that gets the job done. As far as decks go, Pitch includes all the beautifully-designed templates, customizability, and ease of use you expect from a top-notch presentation tool. But the app really shines when you add your team.

The right-hand sidebar is all about project management and collaboration: you can set and update the status of your deck, assign entire presentations or individual slides to team members, plus comment or add notes. Save custom templates to make future presentations even easier and faster.

You can also invite collaborators from outside your company to work with you on individual decks. And if you opt for a paid plan, Pitch introduces workspace roles, shared private folders, and version history.

Pitch also offers one of the most impressive generative AI features on this list. It still struggles to pull in relevant images, but I found the AI-generated written content and design to be top-notch.

The best presentation app for conversational AI

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Gamma pros:

Creates fully fleshed-out presentations from a prompt

Conversational chatbot-like experience

Can still manually edit the presentation

Gamma cons:

Not as much granular customization

I tested a lot of apps claiming to use AI to up your presentation game, and Gamma's conversational AI features were head and shoulders above the crowd.

Simply give the app a topic—or upload an outline, notes, or any other document or article—approve the outline, and pick a theme. The app will take it from there and create a fully fleshed-out presentation. It's far from perfect, but Gamma produces a very useful jumping-off point. (Last year, it was by far the best, but this year, other apps are catching up.)

Here's the key: Gamma is much more geared toward the iterative, chatbot experience familiar to ChatGPT users. Click on the Edit with AI button at the top of the right-hand menu to open the chat, and you'll see suggested prompts—or you can type in your own requests for how Gamma should alter the presentation.

Once you've done all you can with prompts, simply close the chat box to manually add the finishing touches. While you do sacrifice some granular customizability in exchange for the AI features, you can still choose your visual theme, change slide layouts, format text, and add any images, videos, or even app and web content.

The best presentation app for audience engagement

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Mentimeter, our pick for the best presentation software for audience engagement

Mentimeter pros:

Tons of audience engagement features

Simple for participants to interact

Mentimeter cons:

Less granular customizability

Bit of a learning curve

If you need to engage with an audience during your presentation, Mentimeter makes that easy. The app is designed around interactive elements like quizzes, surveys, Q&As, sliders, and more (even a Miro whiteboard!).

Each of these is included in a number of different, professional-looking templates, so you can build a fully interactive presentation super quickly.

When it's time to present, your audience members can scan the QR code with their phone cameras or type in the URL and access code to participate. There's one code per presentation (so they won't have to do this on every slide), which gives access to each slide as you move through the presentation.

There are two main drawbacks to this one, though. First, there's a bit of a learning curve and less familiar editing interface (but I found it pretty easy to learn with some practice). The other drawback is that you can't get as granular with the visual customization as you can with many other presentation tools.

The best presentation app for generative AI

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Tome, our pick for the best presentation software for generative AI

Top-tier generative AI features

Simple, customizable templates

Intuitive doc-style editor

There's definitely a learning curve

Tome is one of the new additions to this list that I'm most excited about. If you're looking for generative AI that just genuinely works , it's definitely worth a look. The editor is a bit more stripped down than most presentation apps but intuitive nonetheless—it's almost a cross between your standard deck editor and a Notion-style doc.

To generate an AI deck, click Generate with AI in the top right, and either write your own prompt or choose from the example prompts that cover a handful of common use cases, like sales enablement and company pitches. Edit or approve the suggested outline, then generate the full presentation.

From there, you can edit each slide as a doc via the right-hand menu—without limits on how much information you can include. During the presentation, you simply size down any slides that take up more than the standard amount of space. It's super simple but somehow feels revolutionary in a presentation app.

What about the old standbys?

You might notice a few major presentation players aren't on this list, including OGs Microsoft PowerPoint, Apple Keynote, and Google Slides. These apps are perfectly adequate for creating basic presentations, and they're free if you have a Windows or Mac device or a Google account.

I didn't include them on the list because the presentation space has really developed in the last several years, and after testing them out, I found these behemoths haven't kept pace. If they weren't made by Microsoft/Apple/Google, I might not even be mentioning them. They're pretty basic tools, they're behind the curve when it comes to templates (both quantity and design), and they don't offer any uniquely valuable features like robust team collaboration, branding controls, video, and so on.

In any case, if you're reading this, you're probably looking for an alternative that allows you to move away from one of the big 3, and as the presentation platforms featured above show, there's a ton to gain—in terms of features, usability, and more—when you do.

What about PowerPoint and Google Slides add-ons?

While I focused my testing on tools with full feature-sets—those that can serve as your sole presentation tool—there are a ton of add-on tools you can use atop big name tools like PowerPoint and Google Slides.

Related reading:

This post was originally published in October 2014 and has since been updated with contributions from Danny Schreiber, Matthew Guay, Andrew Kunesh, and Krystina Martinez. The most recent update was in April 2024.

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Kiera’s a content writer who helps SaaS and eCommerce companies connect with customers and reach new audiences. Located in Boston, MA, she loves cinnamon coffee and a good baseball game. Catch up with her on Twitter @Kieraabbamonte.

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Best free presentation software of 2024

Find an alternative to PowerPoint

Best overall

Best for speed, best for functionality, best for collaboration, best user interface.

  • How we test

The best free presentation software makes it simple and easy to create presentations as an alternative to subscribing to Microsoft PowerPoint.

A person doing a presentation on a whiteboard.

1. Best overall 2. Best for speed 3. Best for functionality 4. Best for collaboration 5. Best user interface 6. FAQs 7. How we test

While PowerPoint is the market leader when it comes to presentation software, some people may be unwilling to subscribe to a Microsoft 365 subscription, especially if they don't expect to need to use it very often.

However, there are plenty of great alternatives to PowerPoint available for free that you can use. While these won't have the same advanced features as PowerPoint, they still offer a very competent platform to design most any presentation that you need.

To help you choose, we've listed below the best free presentation software currently available.

Add images to your presentations using the best free photo editor .

Google Apps

Google Workspace : Collaboration + productivity apps There are many different presentation software packages but Google Workspace formerly known as G Suite remains the original cloud office software and one of the best business office suites, offering a huge range of features and functionality that rivals can't match, especially when it comes to presentation software. Try it free for 14 days .

The best free presentation software of 2024 in full:

Why you can trust TechRadar We spend hours testing every product or service we review, so you can be sure you’re buying the best. Find out more about how we test.

Prezi website screenshot

Our expert review:

Reasons to buy

Reasons to avoid.

Prezi turns the traditional approach to presentations on its head. Instead of creating slide after slide, this presentation software gives you a single giant canvas. You can add blocks of text or images, or even create miniature slides. During your presentation, you can seamlessly fly around the canvas and zoom in to look at individual chunks of content.

For how complex Prezi seems, it’s impressively simple to use the platform. The only major divergence from Microsoft PowerPoint is that you need to add animated paths from one part of the canvas to another. The tools for this are fairly straightforward, especially if you’ve ever used an animation or video editing software.

Of course, this type of presentation structure isn’t always ideal. Prezi makes it hard to visualize structured data like financials, which can make it difficult to use in business applications. Some viewers also might not appreciate the fly-around animation style that’s inherent to the presentation software.

Read our full Prezi review .

  • ^ Back to the top

Canva website screenshot

Canva is perfect for making speedy presentations right in your web browser. This software offers a handful of free layouts to help you get your slideshow started, and it’s easy to customize the templates to fit your needs. There isn’t a huge variety of content elements to add to your presentation, but Canva makes up for this with a searchable library of more than 1 million images you can use.

Your Canva presentations live online, which makes it extremely easy to collaborate. You can invite colleagues to edit your slideshow (although simultaneous editing is not supported) or seamlessly share your finished presentation. However, beware that Canva can’t import presentations from Microsoft Powerpoint or export finished work to a Powerpoint-editable format.

Read our full Canva review .

LibreOffice website screenshot

3. LibreOffice

LibreOffice is a free alternative to Microsoft Office, and it includes a Powerpoint equivalent called Impress with nearly all of the same functionality. The only big difference you’ll find between the two slideshow creation tools is the LibreOffice lacks some modern features like built-in collaboration and integration with Microsoft OneDrive.

However, Impress does have a few advantages of its own. The software can import files from Keynote, the default presentation software on Mac computers. Plus, there are hundreds of free templates that you can download for free. Even better, there’s no limit on what fonts you can use with Impress, so it’s easy to change the look of your presentation from what Powerpoint typically allows.

On the whole, LibreOffice Impress is about as close as it gets to simply replicating Microsoft Powerpoint for free.

Read our full LibreOffice review .

Google Slides website screenshot

4. Google Slides

Google Slides is part of Google Workspace (formerly G Suite), and it does a nice job of matching a number of PowerPoint’s capabilities. This free presentation software supports embedding videos, creating diagrams, and adding animations to your slides. While the selection of templates is somewhat limited, you can easily import hundreds of additional templates for free or create your own.

Even better, Google Slides supports the collaboration tools users have come to expect from Google. Multiple people can work on a slideshow simultaneously, and there’s a built-in group chat so you can keep track of what everyone is doing. It’s also nice that you can play your presentation in presenter mode, which allows you to preview how it will look to your audience and rehearse timing.

The only downside to Google Slides is that bloated slideshows can experience some loading delays. Also beware that while you can move between Slides and Powerpoint, the conversion often messes with the layout of your slides.

Read our full Google Slides review .

WPS Office Free website screenshot

5. WPS Office Free

WPS Office Free is a Microsoft Office look-alike that fully support PowerPoint files without any layout issues during import. The WPS Presentation tool has all of the same capabilities of PowerPoint, including tons of animations, slide transitions, content effects, and video embedding. The selection of included presentation templates is also very impressive for a free software.

One of the best things about this presentation software is that the user interface will feel incredibly familiar if you’re coming from Microsoft. All of the tools are displayed in a top ribbon, with your slides shown on the left side of the screen for easy navigation. It’s simple to display your presentation right from WPS Presentation, which means there’s no unexpected troubleshooting when it’s time to show off your work.

There’s not much to dislike about WPS Presentation. However, keep in mind that the software is supported by ads. Some users find the ads annoying, but they’re not overly in the way.

Read our full WPS Office Free review .

We've also featured the best free office software .

Best free presentation software FAQs

Which alternative to powerpoint is best for you.

When deciding which alternative to PowerPoint to download and use, first consider what your actual needs are, as sometimes free platforms may only provide basic options, so if you need to use advanced tools you may find a paid platform is much more worthwhile. Additionally, free and budget software options can sometimes prove limited when it comes to the variety of tools available, while higher-end software can really cater for every need, so do ensure you have a good idea of which features you think you may require.

How we test the best free presentation software

To test for the best free presentation software we first set up an account with the relevant software platform, whether as a download or as an online service. We then tested the service to see how the software could be used for different purposes and in different situations. The aim was to push each software platform to see how useful its basic tools were and also how easy it was to get to grips with any more advanced tools.

Read how we test, rate, and review products on TechRadar .  

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Michael Graw is a freelance journalist and photographer based in Bellingham, Washington. His interests span a wide range from business technology to finance to creative media, with a focus on new technology and emerging trends. Michael's work has been published in TechRadar, Tom's Guide, Business Insider, Fast Company, Salon, and Harvard Business Review. 

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Top 12 Interactive Presentation Software to Engage Your User

interactive presentation software

Presentations aren’t just about sharing information anymore; they’re about engaging your audience. Interactive presentation software can make your content more dynamic and memorable if you present to a small group or a large crowd. 

These tools offer a wide range of features, from polls and quizzes to animations and videos, to keep your audience interested and involved.

In this blog, we will explore the top 12 interactive presentation software to engage your audience effectively.

What is Interactive Presentation Software?

Interactive presentation software refers to digital tools and platforms designed to enhance the traditional presentation experience by incorporating interactive elements. 

These elements can include real-time audience engagement features, multimedia integration, dynamic content, and collaborative functionalities. The goal is to make presentations more engaging, participatory, and effective in communicating information.

Overall, interactive presentation software transforms passive presentations into engaging, participatory experiences. It makes them more effective for communication, teaching, and collaboration.

Benefits of Interactive Presentation Software

Interactive presentation software offers many benefits that can enhance the effectiveness of your presentations and captivate your audience. Here are some key advantages of using interactive presentation software

Boost Your Engagement

Interactive features such as polls, quizzes, and multimedia elements keep your audience engaged and actively involved in the presentation. By encouraging participation and interaction, interactive presentations create a dynamic and memorable experience for your audience.

Improved Retention

Interactive presentations are more likely to be remembered by your audience compared to traditional, static slideshows. The active engagement and participation fostered by interactive elements help reinforce learning and increase information retention.

Create Audience Interaction

Interactive presentation software allows for real-time interaction with your audience, enabling you to gather feedback, answer questions, and spark discussions. This two-way communication fosters a deeper connection between the presenter and audience members.

Data Collection and Analysis

Interactive features such as polls and surveys provide valuable insights into your audience’s preferences, opinions, and understanding of the topic. The data collected can be analyzed to tailor your presentation content to better meet the needs and interests of your audience.

Flex Your Professionalism

Incorporating interactive elements into your presentations demonstrates a commitment to innovation and audience engagement. It sets you apart as a dynamic and forward-thinking presenter, enhancing your credibility and leaving a positive impression on your audience.

Flexibility 

Interactive presentation software allows for easy editing and updating of content, even during live presentations. This flexibility enables presenters to adapt to audience feedback, address questions on the fly, and make real-time adjustments as needed.

Make it Visually Appealing

Interactive presentation software often includes a variety of design templates, animations, and multimedia elements that enhance the visual appeal of your slides. Visually engaging presentations are more likely to capture and maintain your audience’s attention.

Cost-Effective

Investing in interactive presentation software can ultimately save time and resources by streamlining the presentation creation process and maximizing audience engagement. The benefits of improved retention, audience interaction, and professionalism outweigh the initial investment in the software.

Key Features in Interactive Presentation Software?

Interactive presentation software comes equipped with a variety of key features designed to engage audiences and enhance the effectiveness of presentations. Here are some of the most important features you’ll find in interactive presentation software:

  • Interactive Elements: Incorporates interactive elements such as quizzes, polls, live Q&A sessions, and clickable links or buttons within the presentation.
  • Real-time Audience Participation: Enables real-time audience interaction through smartphones, tablets, or other devices. Participants can respond to questions, provide feedback, or engage in discussions.
  • Multimedia Integration: Supports the embedding of multimedia elements such as videos, audio clips, and animations to make presentations more engaging.
  • Collaborative Tools: Often includes collaborative features that allow multiple users to work on the same presentation simultaneously, or for audience members to contribute content or ideas during the presentation.
  • Analytics and Feedback: Provides analytics and feedback tools to track audience engagement, gather data on responses, and measure the effectiveness of the presentation.
  • Customization and Personalization: Offers a range of customizable presentation templates and design tools to create customized and visually appealing presentations tailored to specific audiences or topics.

Top 12 Interactive Presentation Tools

Creating engaging presentations is crucial for keeping your audience interested and ensuring your message gets across effectively. Here are the 12 best interactive presentation tools

 that can help you make your presentations more dynamic and engaging.

1. QuestionPro Live polls

QuestionPro Live Polls is a versatile tool that allows presenters to create live polls, quizzes, and surveys. Audience members can participate in these activities using their mobile devices, providing real-time feedback and interaction. This transforms passive presentations into engaging experiences.

Key Features:

  • Real-time polling
  • Multiple question types
  • Live results display
  • Audience Q&A
  • Customizable templates
  • Data export
  • Integration with other platforms
  • Mobile-friendly
  • Analytics dashboard
  • Anonymous voting
  • Easy to set up and use.
  • Increases audience engagement.
  • Provides instant feedback.
  • Supports various question types.
  • Limited free version features.

Pricing: 

  • Free version available; premium plans start at $99/month.

2. Google Slides

Google Slides is a versatile interactive presentation platform that allows for easy collaboration and integration with other Google Workspace applications. It’s ideal for creating and sharing presentations online.

  • Cloud-based presentation app
  • Real-time collaboration
  • Wide range of templates
  • Easy integration with Google Drive
  • Offline access
  • Embedding videos and images
  • Commenting and feedback
  • Version History
  • Presenter view
  • Free with a Google account.
  • Accessible from any device.
  • Integration with Google Workspace.
  • Easy sharing and permissions control.
  • Limited offline functionality.
  • Google Slides is a completely free service.

Canva is a design platform that offers tools for creating visually stunning presentations. It provides a range of templates and design elements that make it easy to produce professional-quality presentations.

  • Drag-and-drop editor
  • Extensive template library
  • Stock photos and illustrations
  • Custom fonts and colors
  • Animation and transitions
  • Collaboration tools
  • Presentation mode
  • Embedding videos and links
  • Downloadable in various formats
  • High-quality design templates.
  • Versatile download options.
  • Brand kit for consistent branding.
  • No design skills are needed.
  • Some templates and elements require payment.
  • Free version available; Pro plan at $55/user/year.

4. PowerPoint

Microsoft PowerPoint is a widely-used presentation software known for its comprehensive features and flexibility. It is a staple in both educational and professional environments.

  • Advanced animation and transitions
  • Slide master for consistency
  • Multimedia embedding
  • Export to various formats
  • Integration with Microsoft 365
  • Customizable slide layouts
  • Add-ins and extensions
  • Familiar interface for most users.
  • Advanced design and animation tools.
  • It can be expensive.
  • Available with a Microsoft 365 subscription starting at $6.99/month.

5. Mentimeter

Mentimeter is an interactive presentation tool that allows presenters to create engaging presentations with live polls, quizzes, and Q&A sessions. It’s perfect for making presentations more interactive and participatory.

  • Live polling
  • Real-time results
  • Word clouds
  • Multiple choice questions
  • Customizable themes
  • Integrations with other tools
  • Enhances audience engagement.
  • Great for remote presentations.
  • Limited free plan.
  • Free version available; basic plan starts at $11.99/month.

Visme is a versatile content creation tool that enables users to create engaging presentations, infographics, and other visual content. It combines design flexibility with ease of use.

  • Customizable charts and graphs
  • Data visualization
  • Mobile-responsive presentations.
  • Less powerful than dedicated animation tools.
  • Free version available; Pro plans start at $24.75/month.

7. Zoho Show

Zoho Show is a cloud-based presentation tool that offers a range of features for creating, editing, and sharing presentations online. It integrates seamlessly with the Zoho suite of applications.

  • Integration with Zoho apps
  • Free with a Zoho account.
  • Integration with Zoho suite.
  • Basic design features compared to competitors.
  • Free with Zoho account; part of Zoho Workplace bundle starting at $2.50/user/month.

8. SlideDog

SlideDog is a presentation tool that allows you to combine different types of media, such as PowerPoint slides, PDFs, videos, and web content, into a seamless presentation experience.

  • Combine different media
  • Seamless transitions
  • Real-time sharing
  • Customizable playlists
  • Remote control
  • Dual screen support
  • Presenter notes
  • Combines various media types.
  • Requires internet access for some features.
  • Free version available; Pro plan at $19/month.

Apple’s Keynote is a powerful presentation tool known for its sleek design and advanced features. It is ideal for creating visually stunning presentations on macOS and iOS devices.

  • Integration with Apple ecosystem
  • Free for Apple users.
  • Only available on Apple devices.
  • Requires macOS or iOS for full functionality.
  • Free with macOS and iOS devices.

Prezi is a unique presentation tool that offers a dynamic, zoomable canvas instead of traditional slides. It’s great for creating engaging, non-linear presentations.

  • Zoomable canvas
  • Dynamic transitions
  • Customizable paths
  • Unique presentation style.
  • Highly engaging visuals.
  • Internet dependency for most features.
  • Less suited for linear presentations.
  • Available upon request.

11. Genially

Genially is an interactive content creation tool that allows users to create engaging presentations, infographics, and other visual content. It’s known for its interactive elements and design flexibility.

  • Interactive elements
  • Customizable designs
  • Versatile design options.
  • Regular updates.
  • Some templates and assets require payment.
  • Free version available; Pro plan at $7.49/month.

12. Powtoon

Powtoon is a presentation tool that focuses on creating animated presentations and videos. It’s ideal for making engaging and visually appealing content.

  • Animated presentations
  • Customizable characters and props
  • Voiceover recording
  • Advanced features can be costly.
  • Free version available; Professional plan at $40/month.

Choose QuestionPro Live Polls as Your Right Interactive Presentation Software

QuestionPro is a comprehensive survey and research platform that offers a suite of tools for gathering feedback and engaging audiences. One of its standout features is the Live Polls functionality, which enables presenters to create, conduct, and analyze live polls in real-time during their presentations.

  • Real-time Engagement

With QuestionPro Live Polls, you can ignite instant interaction with your audience. As you deliver your presentation, you can pose questions, gather feedback, and receive responses in real-time. This dynamic engagement keeps your audience actively involved and enables you to adjust your presentation on the fly based on their reactions.

  • Versatility in Presentation Formats 

Whether you’re conducting a sales pitch, leading a training session, or hosting a virtual event, QuestionPro Live Polls seamlessly adapt to various presentation formats. From multiple-choice quizzes to interactive surveys, you can choose the type of poll that best suits your content and objectives, enhancing audience participation and comprehension.

  • Accessibility Across Devices 

Accessibility is key to effective audience engagement. QuestionPro Live Polls can be accessed on smartphones, tablets, and computers, allowing participants to respond using the device of their choice. This multi-device compatibility ensures that all audience members can actively participate, regardless of their technological preferences.

  • Comprehensive Analytics and Reporting

Beyond real-time interaction, QuestionPro Live Polls provide valuable insights through comprehensive analytics and reporting features. After your presentation, you can delve into the data to analyze audience responses, identify trends, and uncover actionable insights. This data-driven approach empowers you to refine your future presentations and tailor your content to better resonate with your audience.

  • Top-notch Security and Privacy

Protecting audience data is paramount. QuestionPro prioritizes security and privacy, employing advanced encryption protocols and adhering to industry standards to safeguard participant information. This commitment to data security instills trust and confidence among both presenters and participants, ensuring a secure interactive environment.

Interactive presentation software offers a wide range of features to help you engage your audience and make your content more memorable. Whether you’re looking for animations, quizzes, or collaborative editing tools, there’s a presentation software option out there to fit your needs. 

Incorporating interactive elements like live polls into your presentations can significantly enhance audience engagement and interaction. QuestionPro Live Polls offers a user-friendly and feature-rich solution for conducting live polls during presentations, enabling you to captivate your audience and gather valuable insights in real-time. 

Whether you’re a presenter, educator, or business professional, choosing QuestionPro Live Polls as your interactive presentation software can elevate your presentations to new heights of engagement and effectiveness.

So, experiment with QuestionPro live polls and create presentations that captivate your audience today!

LEARN MORE         FREE TRIAL

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what is presentation software used for

How to make a slide show

Learn how to make a slide show with photos, videos, music, and custom settings using a slide show maker.

Learn how to make a slide show with PowerPoint

Discover how to make a slide show with photos, videos, music, and custom settings using a slide show app like PowerPoint.

What is a slide show maker?

To create a slide show, you’ll want to use a slide show maker—or slide show app—which is a software program or online service that enables you create digital slide shows with text, photos, videos, music, and other special effects. The full range of slide show features and functionality varies from program to program.

Once you’ve created a slide show, it can be published on the internet or shared with others as a video file. Additionally, you can use slide shows to create dynamic, interactive content on websites.

Slide show software can be used for a variety of purposes, such as creating presentations for work, school, and even your personal life. For instance, slide shows are often used to:

what is presentation software used for

Display photos during an event

Slide shows are a great way to share photos and videos with guests at a wedding, birthday, or other special event.

what is presentation software used for

Create a digital photo album

Some slide shows are created for personal reasons, such as sharing important memories with family or friends.

what is presentation software used for

Highlight products or services

Businesses can use slide shows to showcase their products, promote special offers and sales, or pitch their services to potential clients.

what is presentation software used for

Enhance teaching, training, and public speaking

Slide shows can also provide helpful visuals in educational settings, classroom presentations, and public speaking forums.

What you need to make a slide show

When it comes to creating a slide show, there are a few things you'll need to get started. First and foremost, you'll need a device equipped with presentation software or access to an online slide show app. Secondly, you’ll need a way to display your slide show, which usually means connecting your device to a projector or big screen TV. Beyond that, you’ll need some visual aids and other media to bring your slide show to life.

Explore each of these slide show requirements in more detail:

Devices and equipment —To create a slide show, you’ll use a computer or other device—such as a tablet or mobile phone—with PowerPoint or a similar program installed. You will also need a way to project the slides onto a screen or wall. This can be done with a projector, but if you don't have one available, you can use your TV or computer monitor. Simply connect your device to the TV or monitor using an HDMI cable and select the correct input. Your slides will now be projected onto the screen.

Media —Of course, creating a slide show requires media that adds visual and even audio elements to your presentation. This can be anything from photos and videos to music and text. You can use search engines to find copyright-free media to use in your slide show.

Another option is to purchase royalty-free stock footage, images, and audio files from online media libraries. This could be a bit more expensive, but it guarantees that you have the legal right to use the media in your presentation.

Finally, you can also use your own videos, images, and even music. While this can be a time-consuming process, it does allow you to create custom content specifically for your slide show.

Slide show creator —To bring your slide show together, you’ll need a slide show creator. The slide show software you choose will depend on your presentation requirements and preferences. There are many slide show makers on the market, with Microsoft PowerPoint being one of the most popular and widely used programs globally.

How to choose a slide show maker

When choosing slide show software, it's important to consider the features and specifications that are most important to you. Some of the questions you might ask when choosing a slide show maker include:

  • How easy is the software to use?
  • Is the software Mac or PC compatible?
  • Can I access and edit my slide show on the cloud?
  • What kind of slide shows can be created with the software?
  • How many photos and/or videos can be included in a slide show?
  • Can text and other elements be added to slide shows?
  • Are transitions and effects available for slide shows?
  • Is music accompaniment an option?
  • What are the options for saving and sharing your slide show?

Building a slide show doesn't have to be difficult. With the right software, you can create an engaging presentation in no time.

Six steps for creating a slide show

what is presentation software used for

1. Plan your slide show

Before getting too deep into your slide show project, it’s a good idea to select and save the photos and videos you want to use. This helps you create a slide show more efficiently and purposefully, ensuring a better outcome.

what is presentation software used for

4. Import media

Start adding photos, videos, and other desired media to your slides. You can upload these from your device or online media libraries. If you planned your slide show in advance, you should have all your media saved in one place.

what is presentation software used for

2. Launch your slide show app

Once you’ve decided on a slide show maker, you’ll want to launch the app from whatever device you’ll be using to create your presentation.

what is presentation software used for

5. Add text, music, and transitions

After you’ve arranged the visuals in your slide show, you can provide additional information and communicate sentiment using custom text, music, and timed slide transitions.

what is presentation software used for

3. Choose your theme

Most slide show software offers a variety of pre-set themes, colors, and designs. You can choose one that best suits your slide show or create a custom theme using the program’s various tools and features.

what is presentation software used for

6. Record, save, and share your slide show

Now you’re ready to record your slide show, which can include a voiceover or Cameo . Once your slide show is complete, you can save it as a video to your device or to the cloud, such as OneDrive . You can access your saved slide show at any time to display at events, use in meetings, share online, or send directly to other people.

How to make a slide show with photos

Adding photos to your slide show is a great way to enliven your presentation and make it more visually interesting. Here are a few different ways you can add photos to your slide show in PowerPoint.

A user adding photos to their PowerPoint presentation

Add photos from your device

Whether you’re using a computer, tablet, phone, or other device, you can use photos that are saved to your device to create your slide show. In PowerPoint, simply select “Insert” then “Pictures” from the program menu, then choose “This Device.” This will open your photo library and allow you to find the photos you want to use. Once you’ve selected the photos that you want to import, just click on the "Insert" button and they will be added to your slide show. If you’re using a pre-made theme, you can also right-click the image in the slide show and select “Change Picture.” Again, you will choose “This Device” to access your photo library. After inserting your photo, you can reposition it on your slide or resize it however you like.

Two people looking at a laptop and pointing at the screen

Use stock photos

Another way to add photos in PowerPoint is to follow the same process you would when adding photos from your device, but when prompted to choose your photo source, select “From Stock Images” instead of “This Device.” This will display a library of photos that you can use in your slide show without worrying about copyright infringement. There are thousands of stock images available in most slide show maker programs. Once the library is open, you can explore existing photo categories or use keywords to search for photos that fit your needs.

Two people in a conference room viewing a slideshow in PowerPoint on a large display

Explore online photo sources

Online photos are images you can insert into a PowerPoint slide show directly from the internet, as opposed to using those you have saved on your device. This is a convenient option if you don't have photos already prepared for your slide show, or if you can’t find the right kind of photo in the stock image library. However, there are some potential risks associated with using online photos, namely that you must be careful to use royalty-free images so not to infringe on any copyrights. In PowerPoint, there is a filtering option to ensure your search results only show royalty-free photos. Inserting photos from online sources follows the same process as the previous two methods, but this time, you’ll select “From Online Sources.”

How to add videos, music, and text

Two people in a meeting room viewing a PowerPoint presentation titled We Create Extra Ordinary Experiences.

How to add videos to PowerPoint slide shows

Adding videos to your slide show involves accessing videos from your device, a stock video library, or online video sources—just as you would when adding photos. In this case, however, you’ll navigate to the menu in PowerPoint and select “Insert,” followed by “Media,” then “Video.” Once your video appears on your slide, you can resize or reposition it to fit your presentation needs. You can also set your video to play automatically in the slide show by selecting “Playback” on the menu and choosing “Start Automatically.”

A person wearing headphones and using a laptop view a PowerPoint presentation

How to add music to PowerPoint slide shows

Much like adding videos, you can add music to individual slides in PowerPoint by navigating to “Insert” on the menu, then “Media,” and finally “Audio.” You can then import music from your device, or you can record your own audio directly in PowerPoint. However, if you want your audio to play across multiple slides in your presentation—for example, as background music for a slide show—you’ll have to take a couple of extra steps. Once you’ve imported your audio file, select “Playback” from the menu and choose the “Play in Background” option. Your music will now play across all slides. You can set one song to loop for the duration of the slide show, or you can add more songs to play continuously throughout the slide show.

A person using a pen and tablet to add text to a PowerPoint presentation being displayed on a desktop monitor

How to add text to PowerPoint slide shows

Premade themes in PowerPoint make adding text slide shows easy. On slides that already have templated content, you can simply click on the text and begin editing. In addition to changing what the text says, you can resize, recolor, reposition, and add special effects to the text. Of course, you can also change the font—or style—of the text. Most of this can be done from the “Home” tab on the menu while certain effects, such as shadows, can be found on the “Shape Format” tab. If you’re designing your presentation slides from scratch, or want to create additional text, find “Insert” on the menu, then choose “Text Box” or “Word Art,” depending on your desired text effect.

Discover custom slide show settings

Add even more effects to your PowerPoint slide show with custom settings like timing, transitions, and looping.

Four people in a meeting sitting around a circular table while a PowerPoint presentation is being given over a Teams call

Set slide show timing

Adding timing to your slide show is a great way to control the pacing and flow of your presentation. To add timing in PowerPoint, go to the "Transitions" tab on the menu and find the "Advance Slide" area. Make sure the box next to “After:” is checked, then input the amount of time you’d like each slide to appear on-screen. The slides will automatically advance, creating a movie-like effect that’s great for events and special occasions.

Three people in a conference room using tablets and laptops and a presentation is displayed on a large screen on the wall

Create slide show transitions

Now that you’ve added automatic timing to your slide show, you can make it more visually appealing by creating slide transitions. Transitions are special effects that allow you to animate the way your slides change from one to the next, and there are a variety of different transitions in PowerPoint that you can choose from. You can add these transitions to your slide show from the "Transitions” tab. From there, you’ll select the transition you want to add. To preview the transition, simply click on it. You can click “Apply To All” to automatically add the same transition to every slide in your slide show, or you can manually add different transitions to different slides.

A person standing over their desk and looking at a PowerPoint presentation being displayed on a desktop monitor

Loop your slide show

If you want your slide show to play continuously until you choose to turn it off, you can set your PowerPoint presentation to loop. This will ensure your slide show automatically starts over from the beginning once it reaches the end. To get started, navigate to the “Slide Show” tab on the menu and select “Set Up Slide Show.” When the settings window opens, check the box next to “Loop continuously until ‘ESC’” and then click “OK.” When you’re ready to turn your slide show off, simply press the Esc key on your keyboard.

Slide show template and theme tips

Search themes and templates online.

With numerous slide show themes and templates available, it’s easy to find one that fits your needs.

Customize your design

If you can’t find the perfect theme or template, you can change things like colors and fonts.

Build a custom template

If you want a blueprint to use with future slide shows, you can create your own template.

Add new slides

If you need more slides, you can choose a specific layout and your theme will be carried over.

Edit your slide layouts

Even when using a theme or template, you can rearrange slide content to highlight key information.

Add photos, videos, and text

Themes and templates make adding media easy since most slides have designated content areas.

Change or resize your fonts

If your theme’s font is too small, you can resize it or choose a new font to make it easy to read.

Reorder your slide show

Some themes and templates have a predefined sequence, but you can reorder slides to meet your needs.

Create your own slide show

Slide shows are a great way to engage your audience and present important information. Whether you're creating a slide show for personal or professional reasons, slide shows are an essential tool for anyone who wants to share information in a visually appealing manner.

Discover more ways to improve your slide show

What options are available to create a slide show?

Slide show makers come in many forms. Some slide show software can only be used on specific devices, while other slide show creators can be accessed via the cloud from any device at any time.

It’s a good idea to evaluate a variety of slide show makers to ensure that you find one with all the features you need. For instance, some slide show software skews toward business use cases and others toward personal.

Microsoft PowerPoint is a popular slide show app that allows you to save presentations to your device or the cloud, and is widely used for personal, professional, and educational purposes.

Frequently asked questions

What are slide show apps and software.

Slide show apps and software are used to create and share slide shows. Slide show programs are typically used to communicate information, diagrams, plans, or processes. They can also be used to display photos and videos at events or retail stores. Usually, slide show makers have a range of built-in features and layouts, making them easy to use, regardless of technical skill levels.

What should a slide show include?

An effective slide show should be engaging, visually appealing, and informative. To achieve this, you'll want to make sure to include the following elements:

  • A catchy headline or title. This will help grab your audience's attention and set the tone for the rest of your presentation.
  • A variety of images. Don't just rely on text—incorporate photos, illustrations, or even video to maximize viewership.
  • Bullet points or short blocks of text. Keep your slide content concise and easy to digest; too much information will only overwhelm your viewers.

How do I make a picture slide show?

There are a few different ways to make picture slide shows. You can use online programs, or you can create a slide show directly on your computer, phone, tablet, or other device using slide show software. Some programs, such as Microsoft PowerPoint, can be accessed on your personal device and on the cloud.

How long should a slide show be?

The length of your slide show will depend on several factors, such as the topic of your presentation, the audience you're presenting to, and the amount of time you have. That said, slide shows are generally between five and ten minutes long.

How can I make a slide show better?

Here are a few tips to make your slide show more engaging:

  • Add images, videos, and music to bring your slide show to life.
  • Use a font that is easy to read from a distance.
  • Try not to use too many words on each slide.
  • Use custom transitions and timing to make your slide show flow.
  • Ensure a cohesive slide show by using a theme or template.
  • For live presentations, practice with the Speaker Coach feature .

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What Else You May Want to Know

  • Yes, you can use WPS Presentation for free. The free version of WPS Presentation covers most features and provides free templates suitable for daily presentation needs.
  • However, for access to premium templates and advanced features like OCR (Optical Character Recognition) and premium templates, a premium subscription is required. The premium subscription offers additional functionality and tools to elevate your presentation creation experience.
  • Yes, WPS Presentation is designed to be user-friendly and easy to adapt to. Its interface closely resembles Microsoft PowerPoint, allowing you to effortlessly edit existing presentations or create new ones. With its intuitive tools and familiar layout, WPS Presentation ensures a smooth and straightforward user experience.
  • Yes, you can save your presentations and other files from WPS Presentation directly to Google Drive. WPS Presentation offers seamless integration with Google Drive, enabling you to effortlessly save and sync your files to the cloud storage service. This feature allows you to access your presentations from any device and collaborate with others efficiently.
  • The primary distinctions between WPS Presentation and Microsoft PowerPoint are the cost and accessibility. WPS Presentation is available for free, while Microsoft PowerPoint often requires a costly subscription or purchase.
  • WPS Presentation offers seamless cloud integration with services like Google Drive, facilitating convenient presentation storage, synchronization and collaboration.
  • Additionally, WPS Presentation not only supports PC Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS devices like Microsoft PowerPoint, but also extends its compatibility to Linux, an option not covered by Microsoft PowerPoint.
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  1. What is presentation software?

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  2. What is Presentation Software?

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    Many software suites offer a program designed to accompany a speaker when he or she delivers a presentation. The specific presentation program in this suite of programs is usually (but not always) in the form of a slide show. This category of program is well-established; it doesn't change much, and it supports not only online visual display but also, generally, the printing of related handouts ...

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    Presentation software, also commonly known as presentation programs, can help users create and design unique presentations that are easy for viewers to comprehend. These types of software applications typically have text, audio, video, and image features to enable users to present their work through a story or timeline. Knowing more about what ...

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    Once considered the "O.G." and best presentation software available, it is still widely used and has a familiar interface—which means most users are comfortable with it. This presentation app has everything you need to create a presentation: from animated transitions for interactive presentations to pre-installed fonts and graphic elements.

  12. Different Types of Presentation Software & Use Cases

    Historically, presentation software has been pretty straightforward. People used apps like PowerPoint in the office or the classroom to provide slide-based reinforcements to their speech, lecture, or business presentation. But over time, technology became more and more capable, enabling more intricate uses for presentation software.

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    Expand your office app horizons and see how the best presentation software can make your job a little easier. Best overall: Microsoft PowerPoint. Best for professionals: Canva. Best for Zoom ...

  14. 12 Best Presentation Software for 2024

    4. Keynote (for Mac users) Source: Screenshot from Keynote. For Apple users, Keynote is a presentation tool designed exclusively for your Apple devices and is available on macOS, iOS and iPadOS. Keynote is known for its sleek and intuitive interface, reflecting Apple's design aesthetics.

  15. What is Presentation Software?

    A presentation software (sometimes called a presentation program) is a digital tool. It utilizes sequences of graphics, text, audio, and video to accompany a spoken presentation. These sequences, often called slides, are consolidated in virtual files called "slide decks.".

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    5. Libre Office Impress. Libre Office is free presentation software, an open-source alternative to PowerPoint. As you can expect from a free product, it offers only the main features of its "big brother", but it's a good solution for people used to Microsoft's productivity suite.

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    The best presentation software. Canva for a free presentation app. Beautiful.ai for AI-powered design. Prezi for non-linear, conversational presentations. Powtoon for video presentations. Pitch for collaborating with your team on presentations. Gamma for conversational AI features.

  23. Best free presentation software of 2024

    The software can import files from Keynote, the default presentation software on Mac computers. Plus, there are hundreds of free templates that you can download for free.

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    Free with Zoho account; part of Zoho Workplace bundle starting at $2.50/user/month. 8. SlideDog. SlideDog is a presentation tool that allows you to combine different types of media, such as PowerPoint slides, PDFs, videos, and web content, into a seamless presentation experience. Key Features: Combine different media.

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  26. How to Create a Multimedia Presentation (& Tools to Use)

    The 4 Best Multimedia Presentation Software to Get You Started. To create multimedia presentations, you need the right tools. Below are four tools to help you create engaging multimedia presentations. Software #1: Visme. The first software on the list is Visme. The varied collection of integrations in our editor is just the right combination to ...

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