When Apple released the original iPad in April 2010, I immediately became addicted. I thought I had finally found a lightweight business tool that would help me be more productive during my extensive travel schedule – and finally release me from the burden of dragging my 10 lbs. laptop across the country (after one rotator cuff surgery, my shoulder was especially thankful).
Unfortunately, I quickly became frustrated with the lack of full support for PowerPoint on the iPad. Most of my travels required me to deliver presentations at conferences or customer meetings. Specifically, my PowerPoint presentations included expertly-designed animations from my marketing team – and I couldn’t use any of them on my iPad.
I went back to our Engineering team to see if we could solve this problem. After all, we supported full PowerPoint animations in our core Brainshark product – why couldn't we show those on an iPad too?
SlideShark was born
Within weeks we launched the first version of SlideShark for the iPad. Although PowerPoint on the iPad was not our core business, we now had a (FREE!) solution that the market needed desperately. Users flocked to the service by the millions. At our peak, we saw over 20,000 signups per week and processed nearly 100,000 presentations per week for users to deliver right from their iPads (and eventually, their iPhones as well).
Over the next months and years we won many awards as the SlideShark app became known as "the presenter's best friend." We enhanced the free product and offered paid versions (SlideShark Pro and SlideShark Team Edition) to support additional features that our enterprise customers demanded: security, tracking, broadcasting to remote attendees, and so on.
Then in March 2014, Microsoft released Office for iPad, finally bringing full support for PowerPoint (with animations!) to iPad and iPhone devices. This is great news for iOS users everywhere, and it is time for Brainshark to focus entirely on our award-winning enterprise software solutions: the Brainshark Sales Accelerator and Brainshark Learning Cloud.
As a result, effective August 29, 2015, our SlideShark app offering will no longer be free.
What does this mean for users of the SlideShark free app?
For our loyal tribe of SlideShark users, we are not leaving you out in the cold. First, as mentioned above, you can now get the same functionality as the free version of SlideShark, directly from Microsoft.
Also, the SlideShark free app is not going away immediately. We know it takes time to transition to new tools, and we want to give you the time you need to find the right solution. Up until August 29, you can continue to use SlideShark as you always have. Keep uploading and keep presenting, or upgrade to one of our paid offerings.
SlideShark Pro and Team Edition
While the SlideShark app will no longer be available for free, we will continue to offer our subscription-based versions of SlideShark Pro (for individuals) and SlideShark Team Edition products, which build on our PowerPoint-iOS support with advanced business features for mobile presentation management and delivery. We’ve also recently integrated the SlideShark technology with our own sales productivity solution for Salesforce.com.
If you love SlideShark and would like to continue to use it for your live presentations, SlideShark Pro is a great option. If you’re a user who’s just been introduced to SlideShark and want to try it out, we will now offer a free 15-day trial.
We encourage our current SlideShark free users to explore these products and see if the enhanced features are right for you. If not, remember you can still get full PowerPoint support with Microsoft’s Office for iPad.
If you have any questions about your SlideShark free account, you can contact our Support team any time with additional questions.
With SlideShark, I'm glad we were able to provide a desperately needed service to the marketplace over these last few years. Thank you for your business, and I hope you will check out our enterprise award-winning Sales Productivity and Learning solutions.