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Present Online in PowerPoint 2016 for Windows

Learn about the Present Online option in PowerPoint 2016 for Windows.


Product/Version: PowerPoint 2016 for Windows

Many presenters are used to connecting their computers to projectors or display units and navigating through their slides as they speak to a live audience. Yet, in the recent past, it's become normal to present from your computer via a webinar, with your audiences spanning different countries and time zones. You can use many webinar options, but did you know that Microsoft included a basic, free option right inside PowerPoint? This option is known as Present Online, and you'll learn the basics of using it in the following steps:

  1. Open a presentation in PowerPoint 2016, or choose something you already have open. Make sure your presentation is saved. Now, access the Slide Show tab of the Ribbon, and hover over the Present Online button as shown highlighted in blue in Figure 1.

    Access the Present Online option
    Figure 1: Access the Present Online option
  2. Click the Present Online button to bring up a flyout menu, as shown in Figure 2, below. Depending upon how your system is set up, you may have one or more options in this flyout menu. For now, choose the Office Presentation Service option.

    Office Presentation Service
    Figure 2: Office Presentation Service
  3. This will bring up the Present Online dialog box, that you can see in Figure 3, below.

    Present Online
    Figure 3: Present Online
  4. Now assuming you are connected online with a fairly high-speed connection, you can click the Connect button, as Shown in Figure 3, above. Before you do so, do note that you can check the Enable remote viewers to download the presentation option, highlighted in blue in Figure 3, above. This option is deselected by default, and when checked, allows your remote viewers to download a copy of your presentation.
  5. When the Connect button is clicked, PowerPoint loads up the Present Online window that connects to the Office Presentation Service (see Figure 4), then prepares an online presentation (see Figure 5), and finally provides you with a link to share with remote viewers (see Figure 6).

    Connects to the Office Presentation Service
    Figure 4: Connects to the Office Presentation Service

    Prepares online presentation
    Figure 5: Prepares online presentation

    Provides a shareable link
    Figure 6: Provides a shareable link
  6. You can now share the link provided, as shown in Figure 6 with attendees. You'll find several options:

    Copy Link: Copies the meeting link to the clipboard so that you can send it to attendees via chat, messages, or email.

    Send in Email: Opens your default email application with a new email composed, already containing the meeting link.

    Start Presentation: You can click this button to start your online presentation.
  7. When you click the Start Presentation button, PowerPoint will put you in Presenter View, almost as if you are presenting to a live audience (see Figure 7).

    Presenter View while presenting online
    Figure 7: Presenter View while presenting online

    Meanwhile, recipients of your meeting link will see your presentation delivered via PowerPoint Online, the browser-based version of PowerPoint.
  8. You can step out of Presenter view, or even Slide Show view, by pressing the Esc key. This gets you back to Normal view, and you will see an extra tab in the Ribbon, called Present Online, as shown in Figure 8, below.

    Do note that your presentation is not being shown to meeting attendees now, and although your online meeting hasn't ended yet, you will have to play your slides again or end your online presentation, as per the options we explain next.

    Present Online tab of the Ribbon
    Figure 8: Present Online tab of the Ribbon

    Options in this tab are explained below:

    Start Slide Show: You can start (or restart) the presentation from the first slide (From Beginning button) or from the current slide (From Current Slide button). This is important because more attendees may have joined your online presentation, after you have already shown some slides.

    Monitor: This drop-down list may bring up two or more options, depending upon the number of displays connected to your system.

    Use Presenter View: You can opt to use Presenter View, as shown in Figure 7. If this option is deselected, PowerPoint shows you Slide Show view.

    Share Meeting Notes: This option lets you share your meeting notes via OneNote. If you do not have OneNote installed on your computer, you may not see this option.

    Send Invitations: Brings up the Present Online window that we saw in Figure 6, previously on this page.

    End Online Presentation: Shuts down your online presentation. You may see the warning window shown in Figure 9, below.

    Do you want to end the online presentation?
    Figure 9: Do you want to end the online presentation?

    You can press the End Online Presentation button if you do want to end, or else press the Cancel button to get back.

So as we saw, it's easy and costs you almost nothing to use Microsoft's Present Online feature in PowerPoint. However, the Office Presentation Service that runs these online presentations can be a little unpredictable, and may not work all the time. So as far as possible, use this option only when you have no other webinar or online meeting option available.

See Also:

Present Online in PowerPoint 2013 for Windows

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 you 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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