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You stand at the front of the room to make your presentation, but this time it’s different: You are doing it all with your iPad! With a little preparation and practice, you can use your iPad as a sleek, subtle tool to educate and convince your audiences—without a supporting IT cast. As always using your iPad instead of the technology you’ve grown comfortable with comes with a few challenges.
The hurdles of presenting on your iPad can all be overcome with apps, practice and maybe a few adjustments to how you work. Let’s take the challenges one by one.
1. There is no PowerPoint for iPad. If you are creating presentations on a PC, you are probably using Microsoft PowerPoint and will have to convert your presentation so it can be used on an iPad, which will likely require some cleanup. You may also find that the app you use to show your presentation doesn’t let you edit the presentation on your iPad as you would on your PC. Here are a few solutions:
2. Your iPad may not display everything the same way your computer does. When your computer is hooked up to a projector, you can use the screen to mirror whatever you are doing on your computer screen, in addition to displaying the content of your presentation. The same is not necessarily true on your iPad. Depending on the iPad model, your connection and the apps you’re using, you may only be able to display the content of your presentations, and not necessarily mirror what you’re doing live on the screen. (For example, you might be able to show a PDF of a signed contract, but not draw a circle around the liquidated damages clause.) Here the solution lies in carefully planning and practice. Practice everything you plan to do during your presentation with both wired and wireless VGA and HDMI connections to avoid any unwelcome surprises.
3. You may be Internet-dependent. Some presentation apps require that you convert your presentation through their corporate servers, but that may not be appropriate for some client materials. Other apps may show your presentation in a list on your iPad, but may not store a copy of the presentation locally, even if you’ve opened it and flipped through the slides. Or, if you plan to present wirelessly, you may need some level of Internet access to accomplish that, too.
4. You are your own IT crew. If the upside to presenting with an iPad is saving the expense of a supporting crew, the corresponding downside is that you must be able to hook everything up and resolve all of your own technical glitches. That means dealing with any issues caused by your hosts’ inexperience connecting iPads to their presentation systems, too. Here are ways to avoid iPad presentation glitches.
Finally, the best way to solve any presentation problem? As the old joke goes, “Practice, practice, practice!”
Carol J. Gerber is the Owner and Founder of Gerber Amalgamated LLC, a legal technology consulting company devoted to helping attorneys make better use of technology in their practices. Carol’s class, Practicing Law with an iPad,” has been approved for 1 credit by the New York State CLE Board and can be customized for your firm or legal department.
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