Microsoft PowerPoint

« Back to Glossary Index

History and Acquisition of PowerPoint
– Created by Robert Gaskins and Dennis Austin at Forethought, Inc.
– Released on April 20, 1987, initially for Macintosh computers only
– Microsoft acquired PowerPoint for about $14 million three months after its release
– PowerPoint became a component of the Microsoft Office suite in 1989 for Macintosh and 1990 for Windows
– PowerPoint’s market share has been estimated at 95 percent since the late 1990s

Development and Evolution of PowerPoint
– PowerPoint was initially used to produce overhead transparencies and color 35mm slides
– The third version introduced video output of virtual slideshows to digital projectors, replacing physical transparencies and slides
– PowerPoint has undergone a dozen major versions, adding new features and expanding to different platforms
– Versions for iOS, Android, and web access have been developed
– PowerPoint has become a widely used communication tool in various contexts beyond business presentations

Impact and Controversy of PowerPoint
– PowerPoint’s worldwide market share of presentation software has been estimated at 95 percent since the late 1990s
– The widespread use of PowerPoint led to the development of a new form of communication
– There have been debates and suggestions on how PowerPoint should be used less, differently, or better
– PowerPoint has been criticized for its potential to oversimplify complex information
– Despite the controversies, PowerPoint remains a popular and widely used presentation software

Integration into Microsoft Office and Market Presence
– PowerPoint was included in Microsoft Office from the beginning
– PowerPoint 2.0 for Macintosh and Windows were part of Office bundles
– PowerPoint 3.0 was separately specified and developed but included in Office
– PowerPoint 4.0 marked the shift towards integrated development with other Office applications
– PowerPoint revenue exceeded $100 million annually by the last six months of 1992

Different Uses and Platforms of PowerPoint
– PowerPoint can be used to deliver presentations in various ways, including live audience projection, printing as paper documents, and distribution as files for private viewing
– PowerPoint presentations can be packaged for distribution on CD or a network, transmitted as live broadcasts over the web, embedded in web pages or shared on social networks
– PowerPoint can be set up as a self-running unattended display or recorded as video/audio for distribution
– Different ways of using PowerPoint can influence the content of presentations, with slides carrying more substance when they need to convey information without oral explanation
– PowerPoint has been adopted for personal computing and has scaled up the production of presentations in various contexts beyond business

Microsoft PowerPoint is a presentation program, created by Robert Gaskins and Dennis Austin at a software company named Forethought, Inc. It was released on April 20, 1987, initially for Macintosh computers only. Microsoft acquired PowerPoint for about $14 million three months after it appeared. This was Microsoft's first significant acquisition, and Microsoft set up a new business unit for PowerPoint in Silicon Valley where Forethought had been located.

Microsoft PowerPoint
Initial releaseMay 22, 1990; 33 years ago (1990-05-22)
Stable release
2209 (16.0.15629.20208) / October 11, 2022; 14 months ago (2022-10-11)
Written inC++ (back-end)
Operating systemMicrosoft Windows
Available in102 languages
List of languages
Afrikaans, Albanian, Amharic, Arabic, Armenian, Assamese, Azerbaijani (Latin), Bangla (Bangladesh), Bangla (Bengali India), Basque, Belarusian, Bosnian (Latin), Bulgarian, Catalan, Chinese (Simplified), Chinese (Traditional), Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dari, Dutch, English, Estonian, Filipino, Finnish, French, Galician, Georgian, German, Greek, Gujarati, Hausa, Hebrew, Hindi, Hungarian, Icelandic, Igbo, Indonesian, Irish, isiXhosa, isiZulu, Italian, Japanese, Kannada, Kazakh, Khmer, Kinyarwanda, Kiswahili, Konkani, Korean, Kyrgyz, Latvian, Lithuanian, Luxembourgish, Macedonian (Macedonia), Malay (Latin), Malayalam, Maltese, Maori, Marathi, Mongolian (Cyrillic), Nepali, Norwegian (Bokmål), Norwegian (Nynorsk), Odia, Pashto, Persian (Farsi), Polish, Portuguese (Portugal), Portuguese (Brazil), Punjabi (India), Quechua, Romanian, Romansh, Russian, Scottish Gaelic, Serbian (Cyrillic, Serbia), Serbian (Latin, Serbia), Serbian (Cyrillic, Bosnia and Herzegovina), Sesotho sa Leboa, Setswana, Sindhi (Arabic), Sinhala, Slovak, Slovenian, Spanish, Swedish, Tamil, Tatar (Cyrillic), Telugu, Thai, Turkish, Turkmen (Latin), Ukrainian, Urdu, Uyghur, Uzbek (Latin), Valencian, Vietnamese, Welsh, Wolof, Yoruba
TypePresentation program
Microsoft PowerPoint for Mac
Initial releaseApril 20, 1987; 36 years ago (1987-04-20)
Stable release
16.70 (Build 23021201) / February 14, 2023; 10 months ago (2023-02-14)
Written inC++ (back-end), Objective-C (API/UI)
Operating systemmacOS 11 or later
Available in26 languages
List of languages
English, Arabic, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Hungarian, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian Bokmål, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Simplified Chinese, Slovak, Spanish, Swedish, Thai, Traditional Chinese, Turkish
TypePresentation program
LicenseProprietary commercial software
Microsoft PowerPoint for Android
Developer(s)Microsoft Corporation
Stable release
16.0.16501.20160 / May 26, 2023; 7 months ago (2023-05-26)
Operating systemAndroid Pie or later
TypePresentation program
LicenseProprietary commercial software
Microsoft PowerPoint for iOS
Developer(s)Microsoft Corporation
Stable release
2.73 / May 15, 2023; 7 months ago (2023-05-15)
Operating systemiOS 15 or later
IPadOS 15 or later
watchOS 8 or later
Available in33 languages
List of languages
English, Arabic, Catalan, Croatian, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Hindi, Hungarian, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Malay, Norwegian Bokmål, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Simplified Chinese, Slovak, Spanish, Swedish, Thai, Traditional Chinese, Turkish, Ukrainian, Vietnamese
TypePresentation program
LicenseProprietary commercial software
PowerPoint Mobile for Windows 10
Final release
16002.12325.20032.0 / December 10, 2019; 4 years ago (2019-12-10)
Operating systemWindows 10, Windows 10 Mobile
TypePresentation program

PowerPoint became a component of the Microsoft Office suite, first offered in 1989 for Macintosh and in 1990 for Windows, which bundled several Microsoft apps. Beginning with PowerPoint 4.0 (1994), PowerPoint was integrated into Microsoft Office development, and adopted shared common components and a converged user interface.

PowerPoint's market share was very small at first, prior to introducing a version for Microsoft Windows, but grew rapidly with the growth of Windows and of Office. Since the late 1990s, PowerPoint's worldwide market share of presentation software has been estimated at 95 percent.

PowerPoint was originally designed to provide visuals for group presentations within business organizations, but has come to be very widely used in many other communication situations, both in business and beyond. The much wider use led to the development of the PowerPoint presentation as a new form of communication, with strong reactions including advice that it should be used less, should be used differently, or should be used better.

The first PowerPoint version (Macintosh 1987) was used to produce overhead transparencies, the second (Macintosh 1988, Windows 1990) could also produce color 35 mm slides. The third version (Windows and Macintosh 1992) introduced video output of virtual slideshows to digital projectors, which would over time completely replace physical transparencies and slides. A dozen major versions since then have added many additional features and modes of operation and have made PowerPoint available beyond Apple Macintosh and Microsoft Windows, adding versions for iOS, Android, and web access.

« Back to Glossary Index

Submit your RFP

We can't wait to read about your project. Use the form below to submit your RFP!

Gabrielle Buff
Gabrielle Buff

Just left us a 5 star review

Great customer service and was able to walk us through the various options available to us in a way that made sense. Would definitely recommend!

Stoute Web Solutions has been a valuable resource for our business. Their attention to detail, expertise, and willingness to help at a moment's notice make them an essential support system for us.

Paul and the team are very professional, courteous, and efficient. They always respond immediately even to my minute concerns. Also, their SEO consultation is superb. These are good people!

Paul Stoute & his team are top notch! You will not find a more honest, hard working group whose focus is the success of your business. If you’re ready to work with the best to create the best for your business, go Stoute Web Solutions; you’ll definitely be glad you did!

Wonderful people that understand our needs and make it happen!

Paul is the absolute best! Always there with solutions in high pressure situations. A steady hand; always there when needed; I would recommend Paul to anyone!

Vince Fogliani

The team over at Stoute web solutions set my business up with a fantastic new website, could not be happier

Steve Sacre

If You are looking for Website design & creativity look no further. Paul & his team are the epitome of excellence.Don't take my word just refer to my website ""that Stoute Web Solutions created.This should convince anyone that You have finally found Your perfect fit

Jamie Hill

Paul and the team at Stoute Web are amazing. They are super fast to answer questions. Super easy to work with, and knows their stuff. 10,000 stars.

Paul and the team from Stoute Web solutions are awesome to work with. They're super intuitive on what best suits your needs and the end product is even better. We will be using them exclusively for our web design and hosting.

Dean Eardley

Beautifully functional websites from professional, knowledgeable team.

Along with hosting most of my url's Paul's business has helped me with website development, graphic design and even a really cool back end database app! I highly recommend him as your 360 solution to making your business more visible in today's social media driven marketplace.

I hate dealing with domain/site hosts. After terrible service for over a decade from Dreamhost, I was desperate to find a new one. I was lucky enough to win...

Paul Stoute has been extremely helpful in helping me choose the best package to suite my needs. Any time I had a technical issue he was there to help me through it. Superb customer service at a great value. I would recommend his services to anyone that wants a hassle free and quality experience for their website needs.

Paul is the BEST! I am a current customer and happy to say he has never let me down. Always responds quickly and if he cant fix the issue right away, if available, he provides you a temporary work around while researching the correct fix! Thanks for being an honest and great company!!

Paul Stoute is absolutely wonderful. Paul always responds to my calls and emails right away. He is truly the backbone of my business. From my fantastic website to popping right up on Google when people search for me and designing my business cards, Paul has been there every step of the way. I would recommend this company to anyone.

I can't say enough great things about Green Tie Hosting. Paul was wonderful in helping me get my website up and running quickly. I have stayed with Green...