Take a look at the screen you’re viewing this post on (Laptop, Desktop, Tablet, Mobile Device)

Chances are the screen looks like the yellow rectangle instead of the purple box.







Like it or not; although I don’t know why you wouldn’t, We live in a high definition widescreen world.

every screen we see, use and touch is in high definition and widescreen format.

If you need some more proof, Here it is.

widescreen images








Widescreen isnt only about screen size but resolution.  Without getting too technical , Screen resolution is the number of pixels a screen can display.

For a more visual explanation:



Essentially screen resolution refers to the clarity of the text and images displayed. The higher the resolution, the better the image.

Now that we have a good working definition of what Widescreen and Resolution are let me submit to you this question,

Why is it that most meetings we see today use square screens?

Is it because our presenters are still crafting their presentation slides in a square aspect ratio? Is it because Audio Visual providers haven’t yet upgraded their projectors and screens to a higher resolution?

If the rest of the world has already made the switch why are we lagging behind?

Google changed the YouTube video player standard of 4×3 square to 19×9 widescreen way back in 2008. They changed because 16×9 has become the universal standard for HDTV. The standard resolution of 1024×768 has moved to 1920×1024

So should we be asking our presenters to submit their slides in 16×9 moving forward? Absolutely! Larger conferences in particular are finding the wider screen works better in very large rooms.

Changing the aspect ratio of your slides in PowerPoint or Keynote is very simple. You choose page set-up in PowerPoint and change to 16:9 and select 1280 x 720 in Keynote.


For more detailed instructions on changing presentations here are a few links to submit to your presenters.

PowerPoint Slide Dimensions: A 5-Minute “How To” Guide

How to Change your Presentation from 4:3 to 16:9 Resolution

Change the size of your slides in GoogleDocs