Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Animoto- Slide Presentation Software

I've been trying for a couple of months now to find a way to take a PowerPoint presentation and save it as a slide show video that I can post on my website. I thought I found the perfect, inexpensive, easy-to-use solution with Animoto. I was wrong.

I found Animoto doing a Google search and I read this article about it.  The article makes the application sound pretty good.  But, read the comments below.  In spite of the reviews, I tried Animoto. If you're considering it and haven't bought it yet, I have one word for you- DON'T!!! Or at least try the free version more than I did before you plunk your money down.  I did a quick test of Animoto a few weeks ago and it seemed decent.  In theory, Animoto should have been perfect for what I needed to do.  I just wanted to put a few slides down with some royalty free music and have some cool transitions.  I chose Animoto rather than doing it myself in iMovie because of the ability to use their music tracks and cool transitions. I knew I'd need more than 30 seconds so I ponied up the $30.00 to upgrade my account to Plus for a year. I exported my slides from PowerPoint to jpgs (just like their tutorial said to do). I can view the slides fine on my Mac. But, Animoto takes FOREVER to upload them even though the file sizes are less than 100K each. And that's if it uploads them at all. Of the 10 slides I'm trying to upload the most I ever get uploaded is 3 at a time. The others simply disappear.

Animoto's support is via email only. They have been responsive, but not helpful. They are getting back to me.  But, they are telling me to try things I've already tried. I saved the files again using PhotoShop Elements. I tried them as gifs. I even took a screenshot and converted that to a jpg. I tried uploading some other jpgs. Really small ones upload perfectly and immediately.  Larger ones go into the black hole my PowerPoint slides have fallen into.   Great promise. Lousy delivery. I have asked for a refund of my one year subscription.