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Kessler Associates blog: PowerPoint 16:9

Once upon a time, not necessarily that many years ago, a client requested a widescreen version of a PowerPoint template. The first thought was along the lines of 'is that even possible?', but it quickly became apparent that it was.

Many PowerPoint users may not even be aware that a standard-format PowerPoint slide is set to the computer equivalent of a television's 4:3 screen ratio format. This is 1.33 times as wide as it is tall, and is usually called 4:3 because its width is four-thirds of its height (see the shaded areas in the image below).

Kessler Associates PowerPoint image

A 4:3 screen ratio is the pre-1990s, pre-digital tv picture format that is now looking somewhat old-fashioned. On modern televisions it fills the screen from top to bottom, leaving black borders on the left and right of the picture.

Modern tv programmes are made for a widescreen display which is set at 16:9 (other formats are available but these are usually reserved for feature films). This often means having a thin black border at the top and bottom of the screen on some televisions (especially older ones).

The same is true of PowerPoint, although the 4:3 ratio probably doesn't look especially outdated yet. In fact it is still very widely used - if not universally then certainly by the majority. Even so, standard-format presentations may not be enough when PowerPoint presentations can now easily be displayed on widescreen televisions and monitors. In many cases only a 16:9 ratio presentation will do.

Using 16:9-ratio PowerPoint templates and presentations is clearly the way forward. That's great for new work, and you should get your layout designs over here as quickly as possible so that work can be handled for you, but what about older documents?

If you have an existing PowerPoint presentation, check to see if it was built using the 4:3 ratio which is still PowerPoint's default standard. Then decide whether you want a widescreen version of that presentation or simply to have it adapted itself. Adaptation means having all of the existing content repositioned, because PowerPoint won't do that automatically for you. It's a relatively simple process that Kessler Associates would be happy to handle for you.

Kessler Associates PowerPoint templates image
A large number of sample slide designs can be set up for you to cover all eventualities when it comes to creating your PowerPoint presentations

Some graphics may have to be re-created or edited to allow them to fit or display properly and all of the text boxes and other assets will need to be repositioned and resized, so it's best to get professional help. Luckily for you, we know PowerPoint so well that it won't take us long at all.

We can also provide you with a complete design service for your new PowerPoint templates, making sure that the product reflects your company image in the best possible way.

More information is available via PDFs from the PowerPoint templates page.

Whatever you need, we have the solution.

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