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Slide Area in PowerPoint Online

Learn about the Slide Area in PowerPoint Online, and what you can do to make your slide editing easier and more productive.


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Product/Version: Microsoft PowerPoint Online

OS: Windows and Mac OS X






The Slide Area
The Actual Slide
The Slide Workspace
The Scroll Bars


The Slide Area

Many new changes have happened within PowerPoint Online and several other versions released in the past. However, one thing that has not changed in the last two or three decades is PowerPoint's tri-paned interface! So why is the interface called tri-paned? Are there three distinct regions within the PowerPoint Online interface? Yes, the Slide Area is one of three principal regions in PowerPoint Online, the other two being the Slides Pane and the Notes Pane.

The Slide area comprises everything within the in red highlighted region as shown within Figure 1. This is the area where you work the most, typically through adding and editing slide objects.

Slide area within PowerPoint Online interface
Figure 1: Slide area within PowerPoint Online interface

The Slide area includes three elements, as marked in Figure 1, above:

  1. The actual slide
  2. The slide workspace (blank area surrounding the slide)
  3. The scrollbars that let you navigate between slides (or the same slide when you zoom the view to a larger percentage)

We discuss each of these individual interface elements next.

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The Actual Slide

This is the actual slide where you can add slide objects such as text, pictures, charts, etc. When you use Slide Show view to display your PowerPoint presentation, you only get to see objects that are placed within this area.

You normally click on a text placeholder and type some text to replace the dummy text in the placeholder, as shown in Figure 2.

Add text in an existing text placeholder
Figure 2: Add text in an existing text placeholder

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The Slide Workspace

This is the area behind the slide. Although any objects you place here can be edited and animated, they won't show up in Slide Show view.

This makes the Workspace a convenient place to store stuff that you might want to use later, or maybe slide object animate from the Slide Workspace into the actual slide! Also, any sound objects you place in the Workspace plays. Remember, sound is only heard and not seen!

Figure 3 shows a slide that has objects within the actual Slide and in the extended Slide Workspace.

A slide object placed outside the Slide in the Workspace
Figure 3: A slide object placed outside the Slide in the Workspace

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The Scroll Bars

There are two scroll bars:

  1. The vertical scroll bar, placed towards the right of the slide (shown highlighted red within Figure 4) shows up when you zoom your slide to a larger view. The vertical scroll bar can be used to view the portion of the slide that is not visible (refer to Figure 4 again). You can also drag the handle box in the vertical scroll bar and move up or down to navigate several slides at a time.
  2. The horizontal scroll bar, placed at the bottom of the Slide Area also only shows up when you zoom your slide to a larger view (shown highlighted blue within Figure 4).

    The Vertical and Horizontal Scroll Bars
    Figure 4: The Vertical and Horizontal Scroll Bars

PowerPoint Keyboard Shortcuts and Sequences:
PowerPoint 2016, 2013, 2011, 2010, 2007 and 2003 for Windows
PowerPoint 2016 and 2011 for Mac
PowerPoint Online for Windows and Mac

Have your ever used keyboard shortcuts and sequences in PowerPoint? Or are you a complete keyboard aficionado? Do you want to learn about some new shortcuts? Or do you want to know if your favorite keyboard shortcuts are documented?

Go and get a copy of our PowerPoint Keyboard Shortcuts and Sequences ebook.



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