Much to my personal delight Apple has finally revamped it’s presentation app Keynote! During yesterdays Keynote address, Apple’s Senior VP Eddy Cue announced a complete redesign of iWork apps for desktop including the beloved presentation design app Keynote. Apple’s presentation software has been overdue for a major update and I will be as bold as say that some of the new features are game changers when it comes to presentation design and development.
Up until now when compared to Microsoft PowerPoint, Keynote lacked in master slide and consistency control when it came to producing presentation documents.
Having created quite a few RFP documents for clients using Keynote in the past few months I started to develop a deeper appreciation for PowerPoint and the control it offers on large scale multi page documents. Typically inDesign makes more sense for these types of files but inDesign’s reliance on use of designers for edits make it a less than fluid choice for fast production and collaboration.
Here is a roundup of my TOP 5 features introduced in the new version of OSx Mavericks Keynote 6.0 release:
5. Centered Slide Canvas.
This is such a trivial feature but the previous set up used to drive me crazy. As a designer I’m used to working on a canvas, either physical or digital that’s centered in front of me. The hovering canvas in the top left of the screen was pointless and made it unnecessarily difficult to work with full bleed (no border) images.
4. Master Guides.
Have you every tried to move an object on a slide that was close to a guide and you grabbed and moved the guide instead? After spending time to carefully place the guides according to a grid I don’t want them moving around! Now keynote has separate guides which can only be moved when editing master slides and ability to create new set of alignment guides when editing slide content.
3. Arrange & Align.
Still not perfect as I’d like to see icons vs. drop down menu for object alignment but at least now you can pull out the “arrange tools” toolbox and have them out for easy access. Previously the only way to align objects was through a drop down in the main navigation menu. In Keynote 2009 there were too many steps involved in a simple task such as “center” aligning a column of items.
2. Reapply Master to Slide.
Finally Apple got this right. This is one of the main reasons why I used to prefer PowerPoint to Keynote when working in documents over 20+ pages long. Reapply master basically resets the styling of all the elements on the slide according to the associated master slide. In the new Keynote this will also work on any individual text boxes created as labels or captions. Note that any text boxes with a custom style which hasn’t been created as a “style” will reset to the style that was initially selected for them before they were changed.
Both pre-made and ability to create custom styles.
Easily change the look for all like objects.
Quickly apply, font type, size, color, indentation, paragraph spacing to any piece of text.
Probably the most powerful and my most desired feature in a presentation software. This is a major game changer to me when it comes to presentation and document design in Keynote. It was the one and only feature I continually lusted over in both Keynote and PowerPoint for many years. You might be familiar with styles if you’ve used them in Word or InDesign. It’s an amazing feature that makes formatting long copy of multi page documents a breeze. It helps to preserve consistency and allows for easily changing styles to accommodate new design direction. There are always various elements on a slide used for images, labels or captions which may not be part of the master since they might change from slide to slide. Styles will be your go to formatting arsenal that will ensure consistency for all objects within your presentation.
What else is new & noteworthy?
- Master Slides now open similar to PowerPoint as a separate “screen”. Makes it easier to know if you’re editing a regular slide or a master slide.
- Access and edit your presentation from any of your Apple devices via iCloud. Same file formats across Mac and iOS will make the document look the same no matter which device you’re using. (However, note that custom fonts will NOT display properly. It has to be a common font across devices to show up exactly the same. )
- Keynote on the web will make collaborating with PC users a possibility.
Everything you Need to Get Started in the New Keynote 6.0
- Keynote will be FREE on the Mac App Store for qualifying Mac computers purchased on or after October 1, 2013. (I had the previous version of Keynote through the app store and it upgraded at no extra cost after I upgraded to OS Mavericks both on my MacbookPro and my iPad2)
- You need to upgrade to OS Mavericks before upgrading to new Keynote
- Apple’s Keynote 6.0 Help/Tutorial page
What are your favorite new Keynote features?