The Benefits of PowerPoint Compression

It is estimated that over 30-million PowerPoint presentations are created each day. And PowerPoint presentations can be large files. This can be a headache for any company. And it can cause problems when sending presentations over email. But there are viable solutions. PowerPoint compression tools save effort, money and time by compressing presentations to a fraction of their actual size.

By Scott Heath

Your boss is 3,000 miles away at a conference with the company's bigwigs, and has asked you to create a PowerPoint presentation for the occasion. You create a 15-slide masterpiece, complete with stunning digital images, flashy animations and the perfect background music. Your presentation looks so professional that your boss is going to wonder why she didn't promote you sooner.

But here's the problem: your boss can only access email through dial-up, and she needs your presentation yesterday. How are you going to bypass your email server's sending limit and get your boss the presentation without crashing her email program at the other end?

Using Compression
It's estimated that 30-million PowerPoint presentations are created daily. Unfortunately, most professional-quality presentations also come with a large file size, making it a struggle for even the biggest corporations to back up, store and transfer these presentations efficiently. PowerPoint compression tools allow companies and individuals to save effort, money and time by compressing presentations to a fraction of their actual size.

Most PowerPoint compression tools are installed directly into PowerPoint's program folder. Upon installation, the tools will usually appear as new additions to PowerPoint's regular menu. The user opens a presentation in PowerPoint, and then accesses the compression tool, which may or may not have several options to choose from with regard to intensity and type of compression. Once the user's settings have been applied, compression can begin with the click of a button.

MostPowerPoint compression tools will rely on one or both of the most common methods of image compression: DCT (Discrete Cosine Transform) and wavelet. DCT works by taking a group of pixels that are similarly coloured and transforming them into a group of pixels with the exact same colour. For example, a group of 1,000 pixels in various shades of brown will be made the same shade of brown via DCT compression. Wavelet compression involves compressing an image according to its mathematical "regions". Wavelets themselves are actually mathematical functions. Once image regions are defined by the wavelet, they can be coalesced into a single description without significantly destroying the overall image. Wavelet compression employs the use of elaborate and complicated mathematical formulas to calculate the averages and differences of many different image styles and types (for example, fractal or smooth).

The Advantages
For the PowerPoint user, compression eliminates the need to rework and resize images while presentations are being created. This is because a good compression tool will be able to reduce image sizes in a presentation without sacrificing their original size or quality. And, of course, a smaller PowerPoint file means easier saving, sending and receiving of presentations. When the focus is off space saving issues, more creative room is available and better presentations can be the result.

For a company's IT managers, the use of PowerPoint compression tools can greatly improve network efficiency and performance. Compressed files also allow managers to reclaim more server storage space, which lightens the network's overall load. Routine backups are shortened as well, due to the quicker processing of small files.

Many compression tools carry the claim that their software can reduce the size of PowerPoint files by up to 98 percent. But approach with caution: it's often best to download a trial version of the software to see what it can do before you purchase. is one of the leading authorities on compressing PowerPoint presentations. It is also affiliated with

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