What is a .PPT file?

A .PPT is a presentation file for use with Microsoft PowerPoint. .PPT files contain various types of data, such as text, images, music and even videos. The PowerPoint programme features built-in templates or the ability to design presentations from scratch.

What does .PPT stand for?

.PPT stands for PowerPoint Presentation. The name abbreviation makes it easy for you to recognise presentation files on your device. They appear as: [Title].PPT in your files.

History of the .PPT file.

The .PPT format was first created by Microsoft in 1987 as the primary file type for the PowerPoint software, for Apple Macintosh computers only. It came into widespread use in 1997, with the advent of Windows and was supported by Microsoft Office 97-2003 software versions. In 2007, .PPT was replaced with the Open XML Presentation file format or.PPTX. The .PPT binary file format can still be opened by newer versions of PowerPoint.

What are .PPT files used for?

These files are mainly used to create presentations in Microsoft PowerPoint. .PPT files are an engaging way of presenting information and getting the message across to an audience.

Some common uses of PowerPoint Presentations include:

Educational purposes

Many educational institutions such as schools, universities and professional training providers deliver their courses using .PPT files, in person and remotely. Students are often required to create presentations as part of their assignments, too.


Most businesses create in-house reports, targets, training etc. in PowerPoint to spread knowledge among their employees, as well as externally, creating pitches or other sales materials to be presented professionally to clients.


You can create digital albums by putting your favourite photos together into a slideshow. If you’re an artist, you can use .PPT files to create a professional digital portfolio that showcases your work.

Need to convert PowerPoint to PDF?

Need to get your PowerPoint deck client ready ahead of a big pitch? Or have some training materials to share with your team? convert a PowerPoint to a PDF with Adobe’s free, easy-to-use editing tools.

Need to switch it back to a PowerPoint file to make amends after the pitch or update the training docs? Easily convert your PDF to a PowerPoint with Adobe.

Pros and cons of .PPT files.

Any file type comes with advantages and disadvantages. These are the pros and cons of using .PPT files:


  • Widely compatible - Aside from PowerPoint, .PPT files are compatible with Google Slides, WPS Office Presentation, Apple Keynote, web browsers and many smartphone apps.
  • Multimedia formats supported - You can add a lot of functionality to a .PPT file meaning hyperlinks, images, audio and videos can be included in your presentations.
  • Can be exported to other formats - Your presentation can be saved as a .PDF to reduce its size, you can export it as a film in .MP4 format or save individual slides as image files like .JPEG or .PNG.


  • High risk of technical issues - Sometimes, certain elements from your presentation are tied to your operating system, so there is chance that they might not work on someone else’s device.
  • Information overuse - With so many features available, it’s easy to add too much data to your presentation and for it to become a little convoluted.
  • Large file size - As you might expect from a file type that can incorporate visuals and audio, it can contain a lot of data, making it more difficult to upload or share.

How to open a .PPT file.

You can open a .PPT file on any Windows PC using built-in software or a web browser. The best way to open .PPT files is with Microsoft PowerPoint, as all the elements in the presentation will be fully formatted. Simply:

  1. Locate the .PPT file on your computer.
  2. Place your cursor on it and double-click it to open (you can also select it, then right-click it and press Open on the tab that opens).

How to open Powerpoint on Mac

You can download and install the Microsoft PowerPoint software on MacOS and use the above steps to open the desired file. Apple Keynote can also open presentations, however, some formatting may not transfer properly between the different software packages.

How to open .PPT on Android

To open .PPT files on your Android phone, use the PowerPoint mobile version or alternatively, download the Google Slides app.

  1. Go to your Documents.
  2. Find the .PPT file and tap on it.
  3. Choose which app to open it with.

How to open .PPT on iPhone

There is a version of PowerPoint for iOS users to easily open presentations, as well as the pre-installed Keynote app.

  1. Tap on Files then Browse.
  2. Choose the location your .PPT file is saved to.
  3. After you find the document, tap and hold on it then press Share from the menu bar that comes up (if you tap without holding, the file will open automatically in Keynote).
  4. Select the icon of the app you wish to open the file,

How to create and edit a .PPT file.

The easiest way to create and edit a .PPT is by using Microsoft PowerPoint software. Choose one of the templates available and customise it or create your own design. You can easily go back and edit your presentation as many times as you need, for example, adding or removing text, images or hyperlinks.

You can do all that in other programmes like Google Slides. You can also save other file types as .PPTs, such as .PDFs on Adobe Acrobat and documents on Google Docs.

Learn more about similar file types to .PPT


Learn about the successor to .PPT files and its improved features. .PPTX is now the most popular file type to save presentations.


Find out why PDFs are so reliable and have now become an open standard.


Explore in detail the popular word processing file types with our guide.


Discover .MP4, the most popular container format for video files.

Looking to edit, convert or share your DOCX

Adobe Acrobat Online has all the tools you need to do more with your documents.

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Why can’t I open .PPT files?

When your PowerPoint isn’t opening, an error message will appear on the screen, telling you what’s wrong with the file. Some of the common reasons you can’t open a .PPT file include:

  • The file is corrupt.
  • The file is password protected.
  • The file is damaged by a virus.

What programmes can I use to read a PowerPoint?

There are various ways to read .PPT files, from web browser-based services to software that’s built into your device and smartphone apps. Most of these programmes allow you to view a presentation free of charge, however if you want to create a .PPT file and edit it, you may be required to pay a subscription.

How can I open PPT files without PowerPoint?

You can open PowerPoint presentations with Adobe Captivate. To import a .PPT file, you don’t need to have Microsoft PowerPoint on your computer. However, if you want to edit the presentation, you’ll need to install it.

What is the difference between PPT and PPTX?

.PPT files are binary, while .PPTX are saved, compressed and stored using Office Open XML format. .PPTX is the upgraded version of PPT, bringing more flexibility and improved features, as well as taking up less disc space.

How do I convert PPT to PDF?

You can easily convert your PowerPoint presentation to a PDF file with Adobe’s free online converter.