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PowerPoint vs Keynote: Unbiased Comparison

Aug 16, 2022
A comparison of PowerPoint vs Keynote

Every presenter gets involved in the PowerPoint vs Keynote debate at some point. These are two of the best presentation software available today. As a result, choosing between them can be tricky.

Many presenters lean towards PowerPoint for several good reasons. However, most Mac users say they prefer Keynote for reasons you will understand as this article develops.

We will provide a detailed and unbiased comparison of these presentation tools to help you choose the right option for your presentation.

PowerPoint vs Keynote: What are they?

Let's give a brief description of these two presentation tools:

What Is PowerPoint?

Made by Microsoft, PowerPoint is the most widely used presentation software today. It is an essential component of the Microsoft Office Suite and also works as a standalone app.

Microsoft PowerPoint has been around for much longer than its competitors and is also compatible with Windows and Mac computers. However, users have to make a payment to use it.

What Is Keynote?

Keynote is a presentation software from Apple and a component of the tech giant's iWork suite. Like most Apple products, Keynote is only available to Apple users.

It is pre-installed on Mac computers, but you have to install it yourself if you want it on your iPhone or iPad. Apple Keynote requires no payment or subscription because it's free.

PowerPoint vs Keynote: Comparisons

PowerPoint and Keynote have all the tools you need to make great presentations. But how do they compare to one another?

Templates

Both presentation tools have a wealth of built-in templates and allow users to add custom templates from third parties. However, there are some things you should know about their templates:

PowerPoint Templates

Users get to pick from dozens of templates for their PowerPoint presentations. Though you can use them for various purposes, we found PowerPoint templates generic.

You won't find a built-in PowerPoint template for specific use cases. PowerPoint's built-in templates also lack exciting designs.

Fortunately, the software has great formatting options for customizing its templates. You can also get free PowerPoint templates from websites like Simple Slides for specific use cases. Our SWOT analysis templates are a good example.

Keynote Templates

The built-in templates on Keynote are better than what is in PowerPoint. First, their excellent design will help you make visually appealing slides.

Also, Keynote templates are split into different categories. You can easily find your preferred template based on its design and use case. For more options, you can download Keynote templates online.

Pricing

Pricing is another factor you need to consider when comparing Keynote vs PowerPoint.

PowerPoint Pricing

Though there is a free online version, Microsoft requires users to pay a fee to enjoy the best of PowerPoint. You can get PowerPoint with a stand-alone purchase or as part of the 365 Suite.

An Office Suite subscription costs about $6.99 monthly. You will also get other office apps and cloud storage with this subscription. If you prefer the stand-alone offer, you have to make a one-time payment of about $139. However, this won't include cloud storage.

Keynote Pricing

Keynote is available to all Apple users at zero cost. As long as you use an Apple device, you can create presentations with Keynote without any payment or subscription.

It is one of the built-in apps on Macs, but you have to install it yourself if you want it on other Apple devices.

Collaboration

If you will be creating, editing, and sharing presentations with your team, you need to check the collaborative features of these apps.

PowerPoint

You can work on your PowerPoint presentations with your team by inviting them to view and edit. But first, you have to link your OneDrive account to the app.

After that, you will be able to set permissions on PowerPoint files and share the link with teammates so they can access it. You can also make a PowerPoint presentation online using Microsoft Teams.

Keynote

Keynote has similar collaborative features to PowerPoint. However, the major difference is that you will need an iCloud account instead of a OneDrive account.

Embedding

With PowerPoint and Keynote, you can embed different files in your presentation slides.

PowerPoint

You can insert videos, audio, timers, images, and other files in PowerPoint. It also supports the insertion of content from Excel and other Microsoft tools.

Additionally, you can insert videos from streaming platforms such as Microsoft Stream, YouTube, and Vimeo.

Keynote

You can add video and audio files to your Keynote. It also allows the insertion of YouTube and Vimeo.

Storage

After creating presentations, you need to be able to store them safely. Let's look at storage and backup options offered by both presentation software.

PowerPoint

You can save your PowerPoint file on your computer or in the cloud. To store your PowerPoint presentation on your computer, you can choose between several file formats like PPT, PTTX, PDF, HTML, etc. You will need a OneDrive account to save on the cloud.

Keynote

Like PowerPoint, Keynote allows users to save their keynote files online and offline. You will need to create an iCloud account to store your files online.

Don't miss out on these decision tree templates.

Who Is PowerPoint Best for?

As we mentioned, PowerPoint is the most popular presentation software. It has been around for decades and can be found everywhere, including in schools, businesses, churches, government organizations, and more.

Let's see if PowerPoint can be the right choice for you:

Your PC Came With PowerPoint

Some computers come with Microsoft PowerPoint. If your PC is one, then PowerPoint may be the right option for you.

Though this is usually a trial version, you will get to test the app for 30 days and see if it satisfies your needs.

You Want To Enjoy PowerPoint Templates

The internet has a vast amount of PowerPoint templates. Websites like Simple Slides have a PowerPoint template for almost any kind of presentation you can think of.

Top professionals design these beautiful and attention-grabbing templates to save you time and energy.

Your Team Uses PowerPoint

To boost collaboration, it is only right that you use the same tools as the rest of your team. The use of different collaborative presentation software will make collaboration difficult.

Hence, you should choose PowerPoint if the rest of your team uses it.

You Need The Advanced Features

PowerPoint is much more than a presentation tool. To start with, you can use it as your graphics app. While it is no match for apps like Photoshop, you can do a lot of graphic design work on PowerPoint.

Additionally, PowerPoint allows users to make their presentations available online. You can convert your slides to video format and upload them online or share your slides during a webinar.

Who Is Keynote Best for?

Most people expect nothing but the best from Apple, and the visual appeal of Keynote presentations is a testament to this. Let's see if Keynote is the best choice for you:

You Use a Mac

As we already mentioned, Keynote is only compatible with Apple devices. All Mac computers come with Keynote at no cost, so your choice should be quite easy if you own one.

Additionally, Apple's Continuity features will allow you to continue working on your Keynote slides across different Apple devices. It doesn't matter if you are with your Mac, iPhone, or iPad, work will go on.

You Want Aesthetically Pleasing Templates and Themes

The quality of the built-in templates in Keynote is unmatched. Keynote templates are so visually appealing that you won't have to put in a lot of work to create a beautiful presentation.

On the other hand, the quality of PowerPoint's built-in templates can be much better. They appear boring and outdated. Hence, anyone that wants to make an engaging presentation with PowerPoint will do well to get third-party templates.

Usability Is Vital to You

Keynote is more user-friendly than PowerPoint. Though you won't master Keynote instantly, it has a shorter learning curve.

One of the reasons for this is that the toolbar in Keynote has a minimalistic design and is easy to understand. You will be able to find the functions you need and complete your tasks with minimal fuss.

Apple also updates the app regularly to ensure users get the best experience.

Advantages and Disadvantages of PowerPoint

Here are some of the advantages and disadvantages of using PowerPoint:

Advantages

  • It is available to Mac and Windows users
  • It offers more formatting options
  • You can get millions of templates from the PowerPoint Community
  • It can be used for graphics design

Disadvantages

  • It isn't free
  • It has a longer learning curve
  • The built-in templates aren't appealing

Advantages and Disadvantages of Keynote

Take a look at some of the pros and cons of Keynote below:

Advantages

  • It is free
  • It is easy to use
  • Lovely built-in templates

Disadvantages

  • It is only compatible with Apple devices
  • It has limited export options
  • It isn't as powerful as PowerPoint

Final Thoughts

So, which is better in the end?

You should opt for PowerPoint if you use a Windows computer. Not only is PowerPoint less expensive than a Mac computer, but you will understand PowerPoint with more ease if you have been using other Microsoft Office apps.

On the other hand, Keynote is the best for Apple users. It is free to use while offering more usability and beautiful templates.

Get our free Marketing Infographics for PowerPoint and Keynote.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the disadvantages of Apple Keynote?

The main disadvantage of Apple Keynote is that it isn't compatible with Windows computers.

Are PowerPoint and Keynote the same?

PowerPoint and Keynote are both presentation tools but they have clear differences.

Which is better Keynote or PowerPoint?

Keynote is the best choice for Mac users while PowerPoint is a better option for Windows users.

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