How to convert an iWork Keynote file to Microsoft PowerPoint format

Here's how to make the most of Apple's free presentation app by saving a Keynote file in the popular Microsoft PowerPoint format.

Image: Apple Inc.

If you're new to the macOS platform, you may not realize how easy it is to create presentations using Apple's integrated iWork Keynote app. Keynote is essentially a simplified version of PowerPoint, for which macOS users need not pay extra. Often the only element holding back new macOS users is the outdated belief that iWork Keynote files are incompatible with Microsoft PowerPoint.

SEE: How to avoid and overcome presentation glitches (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

Here are step-by-step directions for saving iWork Keynote files in Microsoft's PowerPoint format.

  1. Click File from the Menu Bar.
  2. Click Export To.
  3. Select PowerPoint from the resulting menu (Figure A).
  4. Confirm the PowerPoint option is selected within the Export Your Presentation window.
  5. Click the Advanced Options selection to expand the menu and reveal the Format drop-down box if you wish to save the Keynote file as a .ppt file (typically used by Microsoft PowerPoint 1997 to 2003 versions), but know that, by default, Keynote will convert the presentation to the current standard .pptx file format.
  6. Click the Next button.
  7. Specify the filename within the Save As field.
  8. Ensure the proper file export location is selected (navigate to the correct directory if you wish to change the location where the new PowerPoint presentation should be stored), and then click the Export button. Note: The Hide Extension check box is selected by default; if you wish to save the filename with the .pptx extension, clear that check box before exporting the presentation (Figure B).

Figure A


Figure B


SEE: Apple's first employee: The remarkable odyssey of Bill Fernandez (PDF download) (TechRepublic)

iWork Keynote files to PDF conversion

New macOS users should be happy to hear that saving iWork Keynote files in the PDF format popularized by Adobe is equally as easy. Follow the same instructions described above, but select PDF instead of PowerPoint in step 3. No additional software is required.

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By Erik Eckel

Erik Eckel owns and operates two technology companies. As a managing partner with Louisville Geek, he works daily as an IT consultant to assist small businesses in overcoming technology challenges and maximizing IT investments. He is also president o...