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Google Presentation - Google's PowerPoint app goes live

Google Presentation
Google's long-rumored and eagerly anticipated PowerPoint clone has finally shipped. Although we've only had a chance to have a first look, here are some impressions:

What it does have or do
  • Importing PowerPoint files
  • Exporting HTML file
  • 15 built-in themes
  • Text formatting
  • Basic image manipulation functionality (adding, resizing)
  • Versioning
  • Collaboration
  • Online presentation sharing

What it doesn't have or do
  • Animations of any kind
  • Advanced image manipulation
  • Advanced text formatting
  • Sound
  • Video
  • Exporting PowerPoint files

Google has done a very good job of making this new Presentation application (based on code from Zenter) fit in with Docs and Spreadsheets. It looks right at home, and the functionality is about what you would expect from another Google App. File versioning and collaboration functions work exactly like they do for Docs and Spreadsheets, which is to say just fine.

Probably the most surprising and yet most obvious feature is the ability to share your presentations online. Simply click "Start presentation", then email the link provided to your audience. A chat box opens to the right of your maximized presentation view, and you can walk through the slides. Although the chat box bears a strong resemblance to Google Chat, no voice functionality appears to be present currently, though it does seem like an obvious direction for them to go.

Presentation File Menu Creating a new presentation is dead simple, and although a lot of the advanced features of PowerPoint are missing, rarely do those features actually contribute to a better presentation. Google has provided everything that you need to get your point across in a matter-of-fact way, and nobody is going to argue with the price.

If there's one feature that's glaringly missing, it's the ability to export your presentation as a .PPT file. While you can import them (with varying levels of accuracy depending on the complexity of the PowerPoint file), the only export option available is to export as a zip file containing HTML pages for your presentation. This is clearly not preferable, but works in a pinch if you need to give someone a copy of your presentation offline.

Interestingly, although it has been reported that Google Apps for Your Domain is a fork of the code for the regular Google Apps that you get with a typical Google account, Presentation is already available in both versions.

Tags: Docs-and-Spreadsheets, freeware, Google-Apps, Google-Docs, Google-PowerPoint, Google-Presentation, news, PowerPoint, Presentation