Can this web-friendly pre­sen­ta­tion tool com­pete with Ap­ple’s Key­note?

Mac Format - - RATED | MAC APPS - De­vel­oper FlowVella, flowvella.com OS X 10.9 or later 64-bit pro­ces­sor Sim­ple, quick and easy to use

FlowVella is the new name for Flow­board, a pre­sen­ta­tions tool that al­lows you to cre­ate in­ter­ac­tive slideshows, known as ‘flows’, which are stored on­line at the FlowVella web­site. Once pub­lished, flows are avail­able for public con­sump­tion, and can be em­bed­ded else­where: your blog or a so­cial me­dia post, for ex­am­ple. You can even track how popular they are via a se­ries of an­a­lyt­i­cal tools.

You’re limited to up­load­ing 500MB of data a month for free. A pre­mium sub­scrip­tion ($4.99 per month) dou­bles this, and al­lows you to pass­word-pro­tect flows and ob­tain more de­tailed an­a­lyt­ics.

The app tries to keep things sim­ple by pro­vid­ing you with 26 colour­ful and well-de­signed tem­plates, and the oblig­a­tory blank can­vas. Each of­fers a wide va­ri­ety of in­di­vid­ual slide lay­outs for you to in­clude any com­bi­na­tion of text, graph­ics, video (in­clud­ing YouTube clips), shapes and even PDF files. You can also add in­ter­ac­tive links to th­ese el­e­ments to jump be­tween slides and even flows, but it’s here FlowVella starts to fall short.

Con­tent can eas­ily be moved and re­sized once im­ported, but edit­ing tools are dis­ap­point­ingly limited – you can crop images, for ex­am­ple, but you can’t place a frame around them or re­move their back­ground. The lack of sup­port for charts and ta­bles is a ma­jor omis­sion given the app’s at­tempt to ap­peal to mar­keters and busi­ness types.

Part of the prob­lem can be at­trib­uted to FlowVella’s ori­gins – the iPad ver­sion came first. The Mac app is quickly adding new fea­tures, but still feels in­com­plete. There’s def­i­nite po­ten­tial here, but un­less your needs are ba­sic, FlowVella can’t hold a can­dle to bet­ter known tools. Nick Peers

Easy to use and to share your flows on­line, but FlowVella is let down by its lack of ad­vanced edit­ing tools and data vi­su­al­i­sa­tions.

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