Many are interested in free presentation programs: some are looking for how to download PowerPoint, others are interested in analogues of this, the most popular presentation program, but still others just want to know how and how to make a presentation.
In this review, I will try to give answers to almost all of these and some other questions, for example, I will tell you how you can use Microsoft PowerPoint completely legally without buying it; I will show a free program for creating presentations in PowerPoint format, as well as other products with the possibility of free use, designed for the same purpose, but not tied to the format specified by Microsoft. See also: Best Free Office for Windows .
Note: “almost all questions” - for the reason that there will be no special information on how to make a presentation in a particular program in this review, only a list of the best tools, their capabilities and limitations.
Saying "presentation program" most means PowerPoint, similarly with other programs in the Microsoft Office suite. Indeed, PowerPoint has everything you need to make a vivid presentation.
- A significant number of ready-made presentation templates, including online, are available for free.
- A good set of transition effects between presentation slides and object animations in slides.
- The ability to add any materials: images, photos, sounds, videos, charts and graphs for presenting data, simply beautifully designed text, SmartArt elements (interesting and useful thing).
The above is just the list that is most often requested by the average user when he needs to prepare a presentation of his project or anything else. Among the additional functions, one can note the possibility of using macros, collaboration (in the latest versions), saving the presentation not only in PowerPoint format, but also export to video, to a CD or to a PDF file.
Two other important factors in favor of using this program:
- The presence of many lessons on the Internet and in books, with which, if desired, you can become the guru of creating presentations.
- Support for Windows, Mac OS X, free applications for Android, iPhone and iPad.
There is one drawback - Microsoft Office in the version for the computer, which means that the PowerPoint program, which is its integral part, is paid. But there are solutions.
How to use PowerPoint for free and legally
The easiest and fastest way to make a presentation in Microsoft PowerPoint for free is to go to the online version of this application on the official website https://office.live.com/start/default.aspx?omkt=en-RU (an account is used to log in Microsoft. If you don’t have it, you can get it for free there). Do not pay attention to the language in the screenshots, everything will be in Russian.
As a result, in a browser window on any computer you will get a fully functional PowerPoint, with the exception of some functions (most of which no one ever uses). After working on a presentation, you can save it to the cloud or download it to your computer. In the future, work and editing can also be continued in the online version of PowerPoint, without installing anything on the computer. Learn more about Microsoft Office online .
And to view the presentation on a computer without Internet access, you can also download the completely free official PowerPoint Viewer program from here: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=13 . Total: two very simple steps and you have everything you need to work with presentation files.
The second option is to download PowerPoint for free as part of the evaluation version of Office 2013 or 2016 (at the time of writing, only the preliminary version of 2016). For example, Office 2013 Professional Plus is available for download on the official page https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/softmicrosoft/office2013.aspx and the programs will be valid for 60 days after installation, without additional restrictions, which, you must agree, is completely not bad (also guaranteed without viruses).
Thus, if you urgently needed to create presentations (but do not need to constantly), you can use any of these options without resorting to any dubious sources.
The most popular free and freely distributed office software package today is LibreOffice (while the development of its “parent” OpenOffice is gradually disappearing). You can always download the Russian version of programs from the official website http://ru.libreoffice.org .
And, what we need, the package contains the presentation program LibreOffice Impress - one of the most functional tools for these tasks.
Almost all of the positive characteristics that I gave PowerPoint apply to Impress - including the availability of training materials (and they can come in handy the first day if you are used to Microsoft products), effects, the insertion of all possible types of objects, and macros.
LibreOffice is also able to open and edit PowerPoint files and save presentations in this format. There is, sometimes useful, export to .swf format (Adobe Flash), which allows you to view the presentation on almost any computer.
If you are one of those who do not consider it necessary to pay for software, but do not want to waste your nerves on paid from unofficial sources, I recommend that you stop at LibreOffice, and as a full-fledged office suite, and not just for working with slides.
Tools for working with presentations from Google do not have a million of necessary and not so functions that are available in the two previous programs, but they also have their advantages:
- Ease of use, all that is usually required is present, there is no superfluous.
- Access presentations from anywhere in your browser.
- Probably the best opportunities for working together on presentations.
- Pre-installed applications for the phone and tablet on the latest Android versions (can be downloaded free of charge for not the latest)
- High degree of security for your information.
At the same time, all basic functions, such as transitions, adding graphics and effects, WordArt objects and other familiar things, are, of course, present here.
It may confuse someone that Google Presentations is online, only with the Internet (judging by conversations with many users, they don’t like something online), but:
- If you use Google Chrome, you can work with presentations without the Internet (you need to enable offline mode in the settings).
- You can always download ready-made presentations to your computer, including in PowerPoint .pptx format.
In general, at present, according to my observations, not many people in Russia are actively using tools for working with Google documents, spreadsheets and presentations. At the same time, those who began to use them in their work rarely turn out to be from them: after all, they are really convenient, and if we talk about mobility, it can only be compared with an office from Microsoft.
Google Presentation Homepage in Russian: https://www.google.com/intl/en/slides/about/
Create presentations online at Prezi and Slides
All of the listed program options are very standardized and similar: a presentation made in one of them is difficult to distinguish from a presentation made in another. If you are interested in something new in terms of effects and capabilities, and also do not mind the English interface, I recommend trying such tools for working with presentations online as Prezi and Slides.
Both services are paid, but at the same time they have the opportunity to register a free Public account with some restrictions (storage of presentations only online, public access to other people, etc.). However, it makes sense to try.
After registering on Prezi.com, you can create presentations in your own developer format with peculiar effects of zooming and moving, which look very good. As well as in other similar tools, you can choose templates, configure them manually, add your own materials to the presentation.
Also on the site there is a program Prezi for Windows, in which you can work offline on your computer, however, its free use is available only within 30 days after the first launch.
Slides.com is another popular online presentation creation service. Among its features - the ability to easily insert mathematical formulas, program code with automatic highlighting, iframe elements. And for those who don’t know what it is and why it’s necessary, just make a complete set of slides with their images, inscriptions and other things. By the way, on the page https://slides.com/explore you can see how the finished presentations made in Slides look like.
I think that in this list everyone will be able to find something that he will like and create his very best presentation: I tried not to forget anything that deserves mention in the review of such software. But if you suddenly forgot, I will be glad if you remind me.