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Apple Keynote and Microsoft Powerpoint: a Comparison

Updated on July 9, 2011

As workers in the knowledge information era, there are specific software that anyone must be familiar with in our companies. For example, word processing is an early example of software that virtually everyone needs to use.

In most companies, however, presentation packages are coming close to word processing in the competition for the most used piece of software. What is more common in American businesses than scheduling and delivering meetings? If you want to grow in your company you must be able to communicate well in meetings, and this involves using a presentation package such as Microsoft PowerPoint or Apple Keynote.

In this article I will try to list the difference between these packages and how they can be used to enhance your presentation.

Microsoft PowerPoint for Business Presentations

PowerPoint is nowadays the standard for business presentations. If you want to give a successful presentation, you almost certainly want to enhance it with graphics of high quality, and other visual material that will keep the attention of your audience.

The problem with PowerPoint, however, is that the styles that it make available by default are not very engaging, and will make your presentation look very simplistic or plain ugly.

If you search the standard models presented with PowerPoint, you will only see the pre fabricated, low quality styles that have been shipped with the application. Using them will not enhance your credibility with your audience.

Of course, you can spend money with external styles, which be bought from several places in the web. You can also even pay someone knowledgeable to create good slides for your, but I believe this is over the reach of most users.

Enter Apple Keynote

Keynote is a software developed by Apple to create presentations on the Macintosh. It is conceived after the philosophy of PowerPoint, but it is much more well designed.

With keynote, you have a lot more choice of how to create your presentation. Instead of a fixed background that will be used on all slides, Keynote provides users with a large pallet of different styles elements that can be applied on each slide separately. This is made easy by the several style-related tools in the software.

The graphical elements in keynote also distinguish themselves by the quality of the result. All images in Keynote are presented in high-resolution, with stunning graphic effects. The transitions in Keynote are not only beautiful, but are also sophisticated. If fells like these transitions were created by expert graphic designers, not by an average programmers (like they feel in Microsoft PowerPoint).

The conclusion

PowerPoint and keynote a software packages targeted at similar purposes: to present slides for public presentations. However, there is a difference when it comes to the quality of the result.

My experience, and of many others, is that Apple Keynote is engineered is such a way that makes it easier to achieve your results. The available interface options are more focused, than the thousand of buttons in PowerPoint. There is also a lot simple way to achieve stunning effects that are difficult to replicate in PowerPoint.

So, although a good graphical designer can do approximately the same work in both PowerPoint and Keynote, I believe that average computer users can do much better with Keynote.

Moreover, if you compare the price of both products, you will see that Keynote is an excellent deal. Keynote sells for around $70 (along with Pages, a powerful text editor), while the MS product cannot be bought for less than $200, depending on the version of MS Office you are trying to buy.


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