GLOBAL – We’ve been concentrating a lot on fun and multimedia for the last couple of weeks. But now it’s back to business. A Symbian-powered smartphone can also be a powerful presentation tool, thanks to a couple of the new features that come on the devices. We’ve been putting on our pinstripes and firing up the PowerPoint to investigate presentation possibilities on your Nokia. Find out more below.
The first piece of advice that comes to mind if you’re planning to create a presentation on your phone is: don’t. Your Symbian smartphone is undoubtedly a powerhouse of electronic engineering, but its screen is still only three or four inches diagonally. Compare that to your laptop and there’s clearly no comparison when it comes to any kind of graphic design task. (It’s entirely possible, by the way, using Quick Office Premier. But really, you almost certainly have better alternatives).
Instead, make the presentation using a normal computer and the presentation tool you normally use. Once your finished, make a local save in your tool’s native format. Then create an export version for your device. You’ve got a choice of formats:
- PowerPoint format – best if you want to be able to update the presentation while you’re on the move.
- PDF – for viewing only, you’ll be fine. Note that the free Open Office software will export to PDF without the need for an additional purchase.
- Video – Export to QuickTime from Keynote, or AVI from PowerPoint. Alternatively, turn your slides into pictures and then use Windows Movie Maker or iMovie to create a video slideshow. Practice your timings to avoid having to stop and start the movie too often.
Transfer your file onto your device using the most efficient means you can. In terms of speed, that means cable transfer, Bluetooth or email, in descending order of usefulness. Email is really for emergency use only, given the size of the average presentation file nowadays. On new Symbian devices, a good option is to use a USB thumb drive and the USB On-The-Go adapter that comes with your device. This is both speedy and also allows you to work with a single document on both your computer and your mobile device, rather than having multiple duplicates and the chance of mistakes whenever the presentation is updated.
So now you’ve got your presentation onto your phone. What are you going to do with it? This is where we do recommend Quick Office. The chances are if you’ve bought a high-end phone that there’ll be a copy of Quick Office on your device. It’s not the full version, but it works as a viewer. The full, ‘Premier’ version also allows you to edit documents, which is useful if you need to add the latest prices or yet another bullet point while you’re out and about. Or, if you need to review and revise someone else’s deck. It also works with spreadsheets and word processor documents, so for the £6 registration fee available currently, it’s pretty good value. It’s available on Ovi Store or you can get a trial version from the Quick Office website to test out its functionality first.
When it comes to putting on a show, the HDMI cable adapter that comes on the Nokia N8 and the forthcoming Nokia E7 is your friend here. It’s not just for showing off your home movies, but has some thoroughly sensible business applications. If you’re taking a projector with you to a meeting, then obviously, you’ll want one with an HDMI port. The latest models from the usual suspects at InFocus, Sanyo, Hitachi etc. have these. You can also get an HDMI to DVI converter or even HDMI to VGA, if your projector is seriously creaky. Keeping a pair of these converters in your bag will also prepare you for any LCD panel you’re likely to need to work with as well, of course. You may need to play with the aspect-ratio of your presentation, of course, if you’re using one of these solutions. But then, that’s always been the case.
Lastly, you might want to look into remote control options for your phone, to control a presentation running on a regular laptop. Sailing Clicker (£15) seems to be the daddy here if you use Windows, but hasn’t been updated since the Nokia N95 8GB appeared. WMouseXP for Windows (pictured above) is free and more up to date. There’s also Bluetooth Remote Control on Ovi Store for £3: it works with Mac or PC using iTunes, so is appropriate if you’ve got your presentation in a video format. If you’re courageous/reckless, then there’s some open source Java software here that also appears to do the job – some assembly is required, however.
Any more tips, hardware or software related, for presentations with your Nokia?
image credit: InFocus