PowerPoint 2013 piles on plenty of new features compared to its predecessors -- including premade presentation templates, a Presenter View that separates information across your monitor and the public slide show and online sharing features -- but despite its technological advances, it does not include a built-in digital clock. If you want to make your presentation a little more timely, you'll have to turn to a plug-in, TM Timer for Microsoft PowerPoint from developer Tushar Mehta.
Visit Tushar-Mehta.com and download TM Timer for Microsoft PowerPoint; choose the executable file for quick installation. To use this software, you need PowerPoint 2003, 2007, 2010 or 2013 running on a Windows platform. The TM Timer program is free to use for 30 days; if you want to create new presentations with the timer after that period, you'll have to pay a license fee of $29.99 through PayPal, at the time of publication.
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Double-click the downloaded executable file to begin the installation process and accept the default choices presented by the program. These defaults install the program in your computer's existing PowerPoint Add-Ins folder. When the installation is complete, you're ready to add a digital clock to PowerPoint.
Open PowerPoint. You'll see a new PointPoint TM Timer icon added to the toolbar at the top of the application. Click this icon to open the Configure Slide Show Timer window, with which you customize the timer's settings.
Check the box next to Time of Day, located under the heading Select Type of Timer, to add a live digital clock display to your PowerPoint presentation. By default, the clock bases its time on your computer's clock and is set to a 12-hour format. To add an AM/PM display to the clock, replace the text in the Content Format box with "AM/PM" for uppercase letters or "am/pm" to display lowercase letters. Press the "OK" button to confirm your settings and add the clock to your presentation.
From the Configure Slide Show Timer window, you can set the TM Timer to modes other than a digital clock. Check the boxes next to the options Elapsed Time or Countdown Timer to choose these respective modes or select “No Timer” to create a presentation without a clock or timer.
If you're seeking a simple countdown timer for PowerPoint, M62 offers the free Digital PowerPoint Timer for PowerPoint 2010 and 2013. This timer -- which comes in versions ranging from 10 seconds to 90 minutes -- doesn't run through your entire presentation, however; it simply acts as an animated slide that allows you to start a countdown timer by pressing “Shift+F5.”
- Microsoft: Office: What's New in PowerPoint 2013
- Tushar Mehta: TM Timer for Microsoft PowerPoint
- Tushar Mehta: PowerPoint Timer Add-In
- M62: Digital PowerPoint Timer
- Laptop Magazine: 10 PowerPoint 2013 Tips and Tricks You Need to Know
- The University of Texas at Austin: Thoughts on Using PowerPoint Effectively