December 16, 2012

Black Tonic – Give Remote Presentations In Real-Time

Long-distance presentations delivered through PDF slides and telephone calls can be difficult to follow, especially when presenters skip pages or when the audience isn’t sure where to begin. Black Tonic is a web-based presentation tool that designers and other professionals can use to unveil their work to clients in a way that isn’t confusing or complicated.

Black Tonic makes it easier for people to conduct remote presentations by allowing presenters to control the pace and flow of their slides. Create a new presentation by heading to the Black Tonic site and giving your latest project a name. Create separate slides just as you would in a Power Point presentation, then upload the images that you want to appear. When you’re ready to go, you can share the special link that Black Tonic provides with clients or coworkers. Clients can see the first page of your presentation by clicking on your link, but they can’t move between slides until you’re ready to go. As the presentation creator, you will control when the slides switch and the pace at which the presentation moves, which means you can prevent people from skipping ahead or seeing certain designs before you’ve had time to explain the context surrounding your ideas. Once your presentation is complete, set it to “Review” to let your audience return and view your presentation on their own at any time in the future.

Black Tonic is not the same thing as screen sharing, and clients can’t see what you’re doing on the back-end while your presentation is ongoing. This makes it possible for you to add or remove slides on the fly without the client ever knowing. Black Tonic works on any type of screen – including iPhones, iPads, and other mobile devices –which is useful when dealing with clients who may not be using the latest systems in their workplaces or homes.

Practical Uses:

  • Show your client the webpage design you’ve been working on
  • Prevent picky clients from viewing your presentation before you’ve had time to explain it
  • Create an interactive presentation that your audience will love
  • Save time by giving presentations remotely, rather than appearing in person

Insider Tips:

  • Presenters can set their presentations to Broadcast, Review, or Lock
  • Up to five audience members can view a presentation in real-time
  • Black Tonic presentations work on all screens, regardless of type or size
  • Black Tonic offers a white label product for companies with unique needs

What we liked:

  • Black Tonic was designed specifically with creative professionals in mind
  • Presenters can switch or edit slides in real-time, without their clients knowing
  • Clients don’t need to create accounts or use any logins to view presentations
  • People can try out Black Tonic for free before purchasing a subscription

What we didn’t like:

  • Black Tonic doesn’t support audio or video


Company Info:

  • Launched: February 2010
  • Privately Held
  • Headquarters: Portland, Oregon
  • Founded by: David Price and Phillipe Blanc
  • Web site:


  • Subscriptions are $12 per month

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