I had a really old Prezi account. I mean REALLY old account. I left my old school and Prezi would not allow me to switch my e-mail address. Even after I had a new educational account, the old address is stuck. For many reasons, none the least of which is the fact that I have no access to my old e-mail account, I really don’t want to use the account attached to my old e-mail. So I created a new account. Unfortunately, even though I was able to copy some old presentations over, they are stuck in Classic mode without the ability to edit them. I can still view them and embed them. My new license only allows for creation of presentations in Next mode. Next is really sleek looking, but a ridiculous amount of features are just gone or hidden. Much of what is readily available seems to be the automatic views that I always had to change in Classic. It took me over an hour just to layer some map images that I wanted to be able to zoom into. I originally tried to set up an image of a map as a background. When I added a picture to it, it seemed to be floating on top and zooming in distorted my view immensely. I finally added the main map as an image and layered the other maps on top of it. I called it a night after that. Then, when I worked on the project again, I came to discover that I can’t simply add a view to my presenting path like I could in Classic. It appears that all this is now handled with the animation tools, but it’s incredibly cumbersome when all I had to do previously was to zoom in and click “add current view to path.” The zoom feature is tightly controlled, which means it no longer allows you to zoom in further into a picture. You can only zoom to the picture itself in the size you’ve set it up as. If I add a new topic, I completely lose the images that I’ve meticulously added for clarity. While I can still add images into a topic, I’ve always used the background of Prezi as a palette and scattered my information around in a way that allowed the viewer to meander along a path. The way the topics are now set up, the images below completely disappear and I have to add them back in. I also can’t put in a voiceover which was a welcome addition when it was added to Prezi a few years back. All in all, it was jarring to pick up an old tool and find that it could not do what I needed it to do or at least that the functionality was so different that I could not handle it smoothly. This is really difficult when time is such a precious commodity.
For this project, I am giving up on Prezi Next. I am uncertain of the reasons for such changes. Time restrictions require me to use a tool that I can depend on, not one I need to figure out, get halfway through on, only to discover some limitation that I now need to work around. While I was looking forward to the self-directed nature of Prezi and allowing students to be able to zoom in on a map and get the information they need, it does not appear that Prezi Next can do that without a lot of extra work.
This was a good overview of what to expect if you’re switching from Classic to Next. I may give Next a shot in the future, but right now, I’m simply wasting too much time trying to figure out how to something that I used to be able to do quite easily.
There are tools out there to get you up to speed, but honestly, I’m not going to spend $40 on a course for a free tool.