Slava Uskov is a VP of Product Development at iSpring Solutions, an e-Learning software company. Together with his team, he defines product strategy and roadmap, conducts thorough market and customer research, and decides on new features based on actual user needs.
In this conversation, Slava talks about iSpring Cloud, a cloud service for sharing presentations and e-Learning courses on the web.
Geetesh: Can you tell us how your cloud solution, iSpring Cloud, is more suited for presentations and eLearning content vs. other cloud options such as Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive, etc.?
Slava: iSpring Cloud is specially designed for sharing PowerPoint presentations and e-Learning projects.
As for other services, if you upload your presentation to Google Drive, Dropbox, or one of the similar services, you’ll just see a static preview, or on many websites, you’ll just get a link to the file that doesn’t look very user-friendly.
To open an interactive presentation with animations, videos, and transition effects, you’ll have to download the file to your computer and open it in PowerPoint (which obviously not everyone has). So, you have a dilemma either to deliver presentations in a not quite convenient way for your users or take the interactivity out of your slides.
iSpring Cloud solves those issues because it automatically converts PowerPoint presentations into an online HTML5 format. Thus, you can open them right in a browser window, no matter which device you’re using, mobile or desktop.
You’ll get all animations, music, and video saved and play in exactly the same way you see them in PowerPoint. Plus, your learners or prospective customers will be able to focus on the content you deliver without any distracting interface clutters.
We’ve studied hundreds of online courses made by our customers, and we see that they often use animations, triggers, music, and video to present content better and make it more immersive. With iSpring Cloud, all interactive content plays perfectly on any device — smartphone, tablet, or PC. There’s no such option in other cloud services.
iSpring Cloud is an easy way to share not only presentations, but other types of learning content as well: video tutorials, PDFs, podcasts, and Word documents, as well as fully interactive courses made with iSpring tools. To share a file, you can send your viewers a link or get an embed code to insert a presentation on your website or blog.
If you create courses in iSpring Suite, then iSpring Cloud is the fastest way to share them with your learners. You can upload courses right from the iSpring Suite interface, so there’s no need to juggle a bunch of different apps; just click a couple of buttons, and that’s it.
With iSpring Cloud, you can protect your content from unauthorized viewing and use. First of all, you don’t have to send the source presentation to customers. They will receive an exact HTML5 copy of the material, and they won’t be able to edit it or copy its content. Secondly, you can protect your presentations with a password. Other cloud services lack this feature (unless you’re ready to spend your time writing code to protect every single file you want to share). Plus, you can set domain restriction for your files so they will open only at the website you’ve embedded them into.
What’s also unique about iSpring Cloud is the fact that you can track how many people opened a presentation, and even how many slides they viewed. Plus, you can compare traffic sources (for example, social media and embed code on a website) and check how many times users viewed your files.
Geetesh: Please tell us more about your Pro and Business plans, and can you provide some pointers that will help users decide which plan is best suited for them?
Slava: iSpring Cloud Pro is a plan for a single user. Let’s say you need to send a presentation to a potential customer to demonstrate your new product, or a teacher wants to share their course with students. iSpring Cloud Pro allows you to upload your materials (up to 50) and send them to your audience via a link, or embed them into your website.
As for the Business plan, it’s primarily focused on companies, especially those which have employees located in different branches. Firstly, there’s unlimited space, and you can upload as many content items as you need. Secondly, it’s a multi-user account, so it fits well for teamwork; for example, a course developer can review content together with a team. There’s an option to set different permissions for team members and decide who can view content or also edit it. Plus, you can divide employees into groups and share content with a whole group with just one click.
And one more key difference about iSpring Cloud Business is reporting. If you share your course, video, or presentation to a group of employees, you can track the effectiveness of your content and see which presentations and even slides are the most popular, and which traffic source works better. Based on that, you can decide whether to update your content to make it more engaging or stay with the current version.
Finally, it’s always better to try before paying for the service! To choose which plan fits your presentation sharing purposes most, you can register a free trial account and gain first-hand experience. All the paid features of iSpring Cloud are available during the 14-day free trial period.