SlideShare redoes presentation-sharing site with HTML5

Now the site will work on iPhones and iPads

SlideShare, a site for posting, viewing, rating and commenting on business presentations, documents and videos, has re-engineered its site using HTML5, making it compatible with Apple iOS devices.

SlideShare previously relied on Flash, but that meant that its content couldn't be viewed on iPads and iPhones, which don't support the Adobe format, the company said on Tuesday.

Other benefits of the switch to HTML5 are a 30 percent performance improvement for the site, and an improved visibility for the content on search engines, whose crawlers find HTML friendlier than Flash.

In addition, functionality previously available only via desktop browsers will now be part of the mobile experience, including copying and pasting text, and viewing embedded documents.

Rebuilding the site in HTML5 was a major engineering effort for SlideShare, said Jon Boutelle, the company's CTO.

However, the company is confident it made the right technology choice, after deciding against creating proprietary applications for a variety of mobile platforms. The latter option creates complexity for users and doesn't offer as good performance as HTML5, he said.

The Flash version of the SlideShare site will only surface for users who visit using a browser that doesn't support HTML5.

SlideShare has about 55 million unique monthly visitors to its site, most of them professionals. They view about 3 billion slides every month.

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Juan Carlos Perez

IDG News Service
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