As a basic presentation tool, PowerPoint is great and used correctly, the animation features can create some decent flows but I’ve always been frustrated by the fact that you cannot set individual slides to get to the end of their animations and automatically move to the next slide.
There’s a bunch of suggestions out there such as using Rehearsal timing (doesn’t really work outside of rehearsal timing) or using macros which require coding knowledge and trigger all sorts of security warnings (not great for files that are often emailed outside of organisations).
The Solution (sort of)
I found a solution that works for my use-case which is for animated ‘exit transitions’ (where elements on a title page animate in, then animate out on another slide) and that is simply to use the Advanced Slide After: xx:xx.xx option on the transitions tab for each slide.
Let’s take a slide from a presentation for my cyber security company Seguro, I have the following as a title slide which nicely animates the title IN as soon as the slide loads:
When I’m presenting, I want to stand there and say “Now I’ll talk about attacking passwords” then click next, at this stage I want the following slide to load, show the exit animation and then MOVE AUTOMATICALLY TO THE NEXT SLIDE:
The problem is there is not simple step I can chain to the end of the exit animations to say “Now move to the next slide” (MIcrosoft, if you’re listening please add this feature). If I leave this as it is, the animations stops on a green empty page until I rememger to click next again – not very fluid.
Instead, I add up how long the exit animation takes by clicking on each of the steps and adding the time together. In the example above, it’s 0.25 seconds + 0.5 seconds + 0.5 seconds (because the middle 3 animations play at the same time).
Now I go to the Transitions tab in PowerPoint, on the far right-hand side there is an option to select Advance slide, check the After checkbox and enter the total animation time (for me, that’s 00:01.25 seconds):
Now no matter what, that slide shows for 1.25 seconds and then moves on.