Microsoft Office 2013: PowerPoint review

Start Screen

When you fire up the new PowerPoint, you get a much more useful welcome screen that shows a collection of templates and themes from which to create your presentation. You can also easily track your recently opened documents, PowerPoint will let you jump straight to the slide you left off. Scouring the many new themes, we found that many of them are optimized for wide screen presentations; this is certainly welcomed as most computer displays today now come with a 16:9 aspect ratio.

Presenter View

For us, the new Presenter View easily ranks as the top new addition in PowerPoint. The idea is simple: When you're doing a presentation, the display that the audience have their eyes on (say; a projector screen) shown the slide you want them to see; on the other hand, your own screen shows the same slide, as well as an enhanced set of tools that you can use, and which the audience don't see. In this presenter's view, you can see the notes that you've jotted down for each slide, and you can adjust the text size larger or smaller so that they’re easier on the eyes.

To draw the audience's attention to certain parts of the slide, you can use the on-screen 'laser' pointer. Alternatively, especially when there are elements that you wish to zoom into, use the Slide Zoom function to magnify an area of the slide. That's right – there's now no need to crop an image and create another slide manually, or resort to that crude draw-a-box-around-the-element trick. There's a timer too for you to pace yourself. Also, you can quickly check what are the up coming slide, and if you're running short on time, you can skip over certain slides, and your audience would be none the wiser.


A slide can look hideous for many reasons. And one of them is when colors of various elements 'clash' with one another. While PowerPoint comes with theme colors that you can use there are times you may want to pick an exact hue for one element (say, the title) to match the color of another element (maybe the background image) in the slide. The new Eyedropper tool makes matching colors a walk in the park. It's found in any drop-down menu that lets you pick a color, for things like fill, outline, glow, and text color. And here's a power user tip: You can even match colors outside of PowerPoint. By left-clicking withing the slide and dragging your mouse, you can move the Eyedropper cursor outside the PowerPoint window. Let go of the mouse button when you have found the desired color.

Improved Smart Guides

Smart Guides are dashed lines that help you to align text and graphics as you move them around the slide. While they aren't new to PowerPoint, they’ve gained considerable improvements in the new version. Our favourite is the ability to do equidistant alignment. For example, when aligning three or more shapes, small arrows will appear to tell you if the spacings are identical. In addition, you can assign a color to guides, as well as add guides to a Slide Master. For perfectionists, nudging a shape with the arrow keys is now more precise.
Microsoft Office 2013: PowerPoint review Microsoft Office 2013: PowerPoint review Reviewed by Echo on 9:56:00 AM Rating: 5

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