AuthorStream Desktop: easily insert YouTube videos into Powerpoint


AuthorStream Desktop is a free PowerPoint Add-on that makes it easy to search for and insert YouTube videos as well as images from the web into your PowerPoint files.

Users on other computers that you might share your PowerPoint files with will need an internet connection to view the embedded videos, but will NOT require AuthorStream Desktop installed on their computers in order to do so.

Ever wanted to insert YouTube videos into your PowerPoint presentations? AuthorStream desktop makes it extremely easy to do so. Here are more notes on this program:

  • What it does: embeds a YouTube video or images from the web into a PowerPoint presentation, allowing you to place and resize your media on the page as you would any image object. Does NOT download videos, and does NOT save the actual video inside your PowerPoint files.
  • User interface: click on the authorStream ribbon (in PowerPoint 2007) to access its functionality. Very straightforward. Note that I did not test on PowerPoint 2003 and am not sure what the interface looks like there.
  • Two ways to embed: you can either provide the URL for the YouTube video or image you would like to embed, or otherwise use the built in search functionality (will display search results from Google or Bing image search).
  • Sharing your files: you can email or share your Presentations with other users and they will be able to view them without having to have AuthorStream Desktop installed (they will need an internet connection though).
  • Uploading: AuthorStream Desktop provides 1-click PowerPoint presentation uploads to the AuthorStream online presentation sharing service, which could come in very handy if you use that service to share your presentations.

Wish list: (or how this program can be even better)

  • The ability to embed private video uploaded to hosting services such as DivShare or even incorporating into Powerpoint any standard HTML code used for embedding video into sites/blogs .This would make this software EXTREMELY useful in some settings (conferences, business presentations) where the video content could not be uploaded publicly to YouTube for privacy concerns (note that private YouTube uploads are a headache that requires setting up YouTube contact lists, logging in with a YouTube user ID and other non-practical measures).

The verdict: a great idea that is implemented in a very simple, straightforward way. This software presents a very practical and easy way for many people to use video in PowerPoint presentations by their videos into YouTube and embedding them into their presentations (which has the added benefit of keeping the PowerPoint files small and compact for the purposes of email, etc.) Not to mention the useful opportunity it presents to PowerPoint spammers everywhere 😉

On the other hand AuthorStream Desktop can be so much more useful if it supported embedding FLV videos that are uploaded privately to file hosting services where only the people you share the video link with have access to it (DivShare is the service I use). This would make it possible to use PowerPoint with private video content in professional and business settings where uploading this content publicly to YouTube is not an option.

Version Tested:

Compatibility: WinAll. Requires PowerPoint 2007.

Go to the the program page to download the latest version (approx 1.56 megs).