Present PowerPoints from Your Apple iOS Device with SlideShark

by Dr. Luanne Fose - The Tweed Geek on October 18, 2013

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Are you tired of lugging your laptop all over campus just to present your PowerPoints in class? Are you feeling anxious about trying to get through airport security with your laptop when you go to present at a conference? Haven’t had the time to learn Keynote yet (Apple’s intuitive and well-designed alternative to PowerPoint, which displays beautifully on iOS devices)? Well then, the SlideShark app for the iPad / iPhone / iPod is the answer to your woes, my friend! 

SlideShark is a free app for viewing and sharing your PowerPoint presentations from your iOS device. Create a PowerPoint on your computer and then upload it to your SlideShark account to display it from your iOS device with the correct fonts, animations, graphics, hyperlinks, and colors intact. Download the presentation to your device and present offline (i.e., without an internet connection). Simply tap or swipe on your slides to advance through your slides and animations, or jump to specific slides by swiping upward on your device.

Presenter mode from the iPad includes slide notes, timers, an animation counter, next/previous slide previews, and the ability to annotate slides in real time. You can even tap and hold your finger on a slide to invoke a laser pointer or set up your slides to auto-advance in a looping mode for poster session events or tradeshows. SlideShark can play embedded videos from your device as long as the videos were created in .wmv or .avi format on Windows PowerPoint 2010. (Note: This is something the company will need to address in the near future since the two supported video formats harken back to the Dark Ages and sort of alienate Macintosh users, who most likely have upgraded to .mp4 and .m4v video formats with better resolution.)

SlideShark can open PowerPoint files from Dropbox, GoodReader, Syncplicity, Google Drive, and Box. Has someone sent you a PowerPoint via email that you need to review? No problem. Simply open the PowerPoint attachment on your iPhone / iPad by opening the Mail app and press and hold on the attachment icon; then, choose the option to open the file with the SlideShark app.

Don’t forget to take along a VGA or HDMI adaptor with you so you can present via a projector or TV. If you’re lucky enough to present in a room with an Apple TV, where you can be untethered, simply use AirPlay to connect to a projector or TV in the room. For more information on this process, please check out the instructions on our Cal Poly iPad Support website.

 Heard enough? Did we peak your interest? To get started:

  1. Download the app from the iTunes Store
  2. Create a free Slideshark account with100 MBs of storage.  Note: You’ll have the option to buy more space if needed or refer your friends to the service to accrue more space for yourself. However, as long as you download your PowerPoints directly to your device for offline presenting and then delete them from the SlideShark server, you should never need more space than what the free account provides. If you decide to upgrade to the business package of SlideShark Pro, you can share an online version of your slides with your colleagues or students after the presentation and track your audience’s viewing habits. (One of my CTLT colleagues pointed out that there is a potential with the SlideShark Pro upgrade for gathering learning analytics. For example, how might the ability to identify which slides are attracting the most attention transform or enhance one’s teaching?)

So… what are you waiting for? Go and install the SlideShark app, create your account, and enjoy the beauty of mobile presenting from your smaller devices!

 ~ Dr. Luanne Fose, The Tweed Geek

P.S. Perhaps you have tried SlideShark and would like to give us some feedback on how it worked out for you? Please let us know what you think about this app or if you have any recommendations for other app reviews from Our Favorite Apps list for future blog posts from the Tweed Geek.

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