I had to create a presentation to play automatically on my iPad at an upcoming networking event, where I had a sponsor table showcasing my company and my work. I thought, hey, this is easy, I just make a PowerPoint slideshow, and run it on my iPad. Well, you’d think it’s that easy… I did too. Then I discovered, that a PowerPoint document doesn’t play on Docs, which is the app I had installed for viewing documents. Okay, then I realized I also had the PowerPoint app for iPad, which I’ve apparently downloaded before, but never used. I thought, okay, this looks more promising, so I made a quick test document on my iMac and emailed it to myself. I also uploaded it to my Google Drive, just in case.
Great, so far so good. Document opens just fine in PowerPoint, yay! Then comes trouble, because the automatic slideshow that I so nicely set up on the computer, doesn’t run on the iPad. Wait, what? Why not? It is a PowerPoint document, should work…!
No worries, Google will have an answer to this puzzle. A quick search returned about a gazillion results, none of which told me how to solve this particular problem. Frustrated, I headed back to my iPad, hoping to outsmart the app and to figure out how to make it “autoplay”. Not so lucky. But I did discover that it offered the option to add, edit and create animations, transitions, etc if you do sign in. Okay, lets go sign in, thinking this will be my Adobe ID. Nah-ah, not so fast, says Microsoft. If you want to use our app, you have to create an account. Yes, of course, why would they let you log in with your Adobe ID… makes no sense. Well, to them, anyways.
After a half hour of experimentation of different file formats, even exporting my PowerPoint document as video (which didn’t play on iPad at all, btw), I successfully managed to create a new Microsoft account, and load my previously set up document, that I made on the iMac with all the transitions. Lo and behold, when I opened it on the PowerPoint app it magically started the slideshow. Woo-hoo! Mission accomplished.
This is how to do it, step by step:
If you don’t already have it, download the PowerPoint app on your iPad (free to download.)
If you don’t already have one, create a new Microsoft 365 account, and log in on the iPad.
Build your slideshow on your computer, add all the cool transitions, effects, fonts, images etc you’d want.
Save your document to Google Drive, or another storage space you can reach from your iPad.
Open the PowerPoint app on your iPad, and under “Open” go to “Locations” and select your Google Drive (you probably will have to turn this option on first, but only once).
Navigate to your document on Google Drive (or your storage location).
Once it opens, touch the “Slide Show” tab, and then the “From Start” button.
Voila, you should have your slideshow play with all the cool transition effects you added on your computer.
Anna Kernbaum is the founder/owner and chief creative of Pixellent Design. You can contact Anna directly at email@example.com, or by calling (310) 896-5071