With constant updates to their Google Docs suite, Google are really trying to become a dominant force in the productivity app arena. And with the ability to add images to collaborative slide decks becoming the latest feature to hit Google Slides for iPad, we look at why this is now one presentation app you should really consider for the classroom…
What is Google Slides for iPad?
Google have now broken the services and functionality available in Google Drive down into separate apps: Docs, Sheets and Slides. Google Slides for iPad (Google Inc, free) handles the presentation side, letting you create, edit, collaborate on and present presentations directly on your iPad (not to mention the ability to add images to collaborative slide decks, which we’ll go into in more detail below). You get a variety of presentation themes, fonts, embedded video and animations built-in to get you started, and it’s all packaged in a simple and easy to use interface.
How can it benefit the classroom?
You’re likely already using a presentation app of some form in the classroom, so the real question is: how will Google Slides benefit the classroom over another free app such as Microsoft PowerPoint for iPad?
One of the key things about Google Docs has always been the collaborative aspect – multiple students can work on the same slide deck at the same time, making edits and annotations in realtime (something which edges Google Slides over Microsoft PowerPoint). And all your changes are saved as you make them, so you never need to worry about losing that last animated gunshot bullet point. If you thought Google Docs traditionally required you to be online to edit, you needn’t worry, as it’s now possible to view, edit, and run Google Slides presentations when offline. You can even present your Google Slides presentation directly from iPad. And if you still need to work with PowerPoint, Google Slides is completely compatible with Microsoft Office, meaning you can open as well as edit .ppts.
What’s the best feature?
The real headline feature, only released last week, is the ability to add images to collaborative slide decks, which has really put Google Slides up there as a presentation app. It means you can for the the first time really create and edit entire presentations on the go, from scratch. Just tap the plus sign [+] in the top menu within your presentation, and choose Image from the menu. You’re then able to either insert an image or capture a new one with your device’s camera, and apply a few editing options too, including moving, copying, deleting, resizing, rotating, cropping and masking.
Where can I get it?
Google Slides for iPad (Google Inc, free), like all Google’s productivity apps, is completely free, and available to download from the App Store on your iPad, or through iTunes.
– Missed our last app of the week article? Catch up on our review of SQA My Study Plan for iPad here.
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