With Microsoft's push to prioritize cross-platform services as well as be a mobile-first company, it's become very important to provide programs on iOS and Android, instead of trying to convince users to adopt software on Windows and Windows Phone.
As part of this strategy the company has delivered Office apps (Word, Excel and PowerPoint) for iOS and an Office Mobile suite for Android phones. Now the company has released a touch-optimized version of Word, Excel, and PowerPoint for Android tablets.
Full of features
Given that Google's office suite has been out for some time, Microsoft is lagging behind in the touch-optimized productivity suite market, but it the company is hoping to find success from the many people who have already bought into its ecosystem.
Currently PowerPoint for Android tablets (along with Word and Excel) is only available for ARM-based Android tablets with 1GB RAM and running KitKat (4.4.x) or Lollipop (5.0). But Microsoft is working on expanding it further, specifically to Intel-powered tablets.
There is no need to have an Office 365 account to download these apps; a Microsoft email address is enough to sign up to this 'Freemium' version.
While PowerPoint for Android tablets is not as fully featured as its desktop sister version, it comes pretty close. You can easily create PowerPoints from scratch or chose one of a number of different themes. Most of the features you need to create fantastic PowerPoints are there, including inserting tables, pictures, shapes, columns of text, and text boxes; formatting text with superscript and subscript; adding transition effects, including morphs; making comments and notes; and changing the way you view the PowerPoint.
You can sync your OneDrive and Dropbox accounts so you can open documents from and save them to the cloud (as well as your device, if you prefer). Support of other cloud services would be useful. You can also save files as PDFs for easy sharing and viewing.
If you're already familiar with PowerPoint (Office 2007 and onwards) then the ribbon interface will be very recognizable and you'll be able to easily flick between menus in the slick interface without problems. It's makes simple and straightforward to use and quick to find what you want. Navigation is also very smooth.
There are some issues with the smooth running of the app. The slide show doesn't run automatically and has to be manually moved from slide to slide by clicking on the screen.
Manipulating images is a clunky process. Firstly, not all pictures can be uploaded – the reason for this is not apparent, although it seemed to be linked to the device location I tried to upload them from. There are limited image editing options - but you can move the image and resize it.
Perfect for tablets
PowerPoint for Android tablets has a comprehensive list of features, with video and audio, as well as image editing options being the only major ones to add. This app works very well for both the creation and consumption of PowerPoints, which is not always the case for mobile and tablet applications.
PowerPoint for Android tablets works great on any size tablet screen and is the most complete of the Office for Android tablets applications.