Google Slides is my go to replacement for Microsoft Office PowerPoint. Although Slides isn’t as powerful as Microsoft’s slideshow maker, Slides has many of the most important features, and offers an excellent way to generate presentations.
Google Slides generally works for most situations, but one feature the program was missing is Chromecast support.
Considering Google Cast and Slides are both Google products, my assumption would have been that Cast support was a no-brainer. Apparently not, because until today, support was non-existent.
But the latest update remedies the problem, giving users a great experience and new ability to give slideshow presentations from a tablet or phone.
Google Slides team did a great job putting together — well before this update — a clean design, which makes you want to use Google Slides even more. The Chromecast connection adds the ability to preview speaker notes and upcoming slides from a simple user interface.
You toggle the views on or off using the speaker notes button in the upper right-hand corner.
(I can’t remember if this was a pre-update option or not.)
Clicking the Cast icon inside of a slideshow gives you the option to select the Cast device on your network.
A quick click and the slideshow begins.
Onward and upward
You move between slides in two ways: clicking the slide screen, or swiping left or right — back or forward respectively.
It’s movie time…almost
Google Slides has a decent response time, and there isn’t much of a delay between swipe and display. Really, the only place I had slight trouble was when I attempted to play an embedded video.
I’m not quite sure what the issue was, but there was a long buffer time to even initiate playback.
Since I’m a risk-taker when it comes to presentations — I presented a live demo from Chromecast without a pretest — I wouldn’t hesitate to use embedded video. Other folks will express their differing opinion, I’m sure — side note: let’s take a poll: do you use video in presentations?
Turn down for what!?
Slides also gives you the ability to raise or lower the presentation’s volume. This is especially helpful when you’re going to play audio or video clips and you’re not intending to violate noise ordinances.
The much needed improvements
Overall, these much needed improvements give Slides one more notch as a high-quality slideshow presentation platform. I’m already in love with Google Slides, and today Google granted my one remaining lustful desire to improve Slides and Chromecast. (Okay, maybe there’s still more than one remaining lustful desire for these two Google products.)