Love them or hate them, PowerPoint presentations are part of our daily lives at work.It may be a useful presentation tool, but it’s days are certainly numbered. With Prezi taking over for the next generation of presenter, Microsoft had to do something to stay in the game.
Enter Sway, Microsoft’s replacement for PowerPoint. Sway is a completely new way to design much better and much more interesting presentations. While you can still create static slides, Sway allows a lot of creative freedom to design much more engaging content. The kind of content to make an audience sit up and take notes.
Originally announced in October 2014, Sway has now been released into the wild. It is a responsive app that is very intuitive and extremely easy to use. Available as a standalone app or on the web, Sway allows you to drag and drop all sorts of media such as video and audio, as well as add text layers and all sorts of clever content.
It also allows you to import social media content such as Facebook posts and Tweets, add YouTube videos, gallery images, branding and much more. Navigation is simple, the controls are logical and it is obvious that a lot of thought has gone into both usability and features within the app.
Highlights for us include the “change my mood” function that will use a new theme or layout to change the tone of the presentation and “remix” that randomly changes it for you. Both are very useful is you’re stuck for inspiration or want to brighten your creation up a little.
Users of Docs.com, Microsoft’s online document sharing platform, will also be able to use and share Sway presentations with the world. You can present, share, organise your work into collections and manage content with ease, all within the same ecosystem. The two work well together as far as we could test and offers yet another boost to productivity.
Sway joins a new generation of Microsoft apps and programs that showcases the massive change of direction the company has taken. We are now getting much more of what we want and what will actually improve our lives, rather than what Microsoft wants us to have. It is a very welcome change and we are excited to see what else the company has in the pipeline.
Sway is a free app that is compatible with Windows 10 and older versions of the OS and is available from the Windows Store. It is also available purely on the web at Sway.com