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PDA Presenting

Joy Summers-Ables
Robert M. Bird Health Sciences Library, University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, Oklahoma City, OK

Definition of "Presenting"

There has been a longstanding desire to be able to project the display on a handheld to a projector for presentation purposes. The progression from using a computer to using a PDA for presenting seems a natural one.

The term "presentation" is somewhat ambiguous as it's most often associated with presentation software such as Powerpoint. While that particular use is not excluded, this fact sheet will focus on "presentation" as it relates to projecting the display of the handheld to a projector for the purpose of allowing a larger audience to view the actual screen of the PDA.

Why Project from a PDA?

The ability to project directly from your PDA allows you to use your handheld rather than a computer or laptop for Powerpoint, web or other presentations, especially if you use a PDA daily for communication, surfing or other applications. In addition, electronic resources available online via the Internet may look very different if they offer a PDA counterpart.


Are you interested in hardware or software? Some solutions are software only, whereas those that provide a hardware solution require the installation of software either on the handheld, computer, or both.

What PDA are you using and what OS does it run? T he solutions run from being universally compatible to very PDA and/or OS specific to working with any PDA and any OS.

Is resolution important? This pertains to solutions that require hardware. Some hardware solutions have a better output resolution than others, so that the display projected is of sufficient quality so the audience can easily view it.

How do you want to use the solution? Do you intend to use the solution to only display what is on the handheld, or do you need more control over your PDA through the hardware/software. The most common options are:

  • Display (or mirror) only what's on the handheld
  • Provide control of the handheld through software loaded on the computer

What is the cost? Although none of the solutions described below are overly expensive, they do range in price from $19.95 to $199.00.


If you look for solutions on the Internet, be aware that 2003-2006 seemed to be a period when several hardware options were introduced or were "coming soon"; many of these are no longer available or never made it to the marketplace for various reasons. Solutions with an * don’t conform to "presentation" as defined above, but are included to provide examples of what you may encounter when searching for presentation solutions.

FlyPresenter - CF
LifeView, the folks who make the FlyCam and FlyJacket, have bundled their CF VGA/Video card with IA Style's IA Presenter software in a presentation solution called Fly Presenter. The card can be used in Pocket PCs with a type I or type II CF slot.

IA Presenter
This reasonably priced CF Type I card is compatible with type I and type II CF slots. Software consists of IA Presenter Converter which convert the desktop version to handheld version, IA Presenter on the Pocket PC is used to manipulate the way you present them slides, and IA Screen Mirror allows you to mirror your handheld's screen using a projector, CRT or TV monitor. Each of these software modules is flexible in its functionality.

Margi Presenter-to-Go
MARGI's Presenter-to-Go is one of the earliest and most popular presentation tools for the PDA market. Its support for a wide variety of handheld devices including Palm OS, Pocket PC and HPC devices and flexible media formats which include CF card, PC card, SD card, Springboard and Memory Stick makes this a solution for just about every current PDA. Install Presenter-to-Go and Mirror applications on your PDA.

mDesktop for Windows Mobile
Put your smartphone on your desk and control it fully from your PC. Integrate your smartphone with your PC via mDesktop and make calls, send SMS messages and use your smartphone's data and applications from your PC's big screen and keyboard in a practical and user friendly way.

Pocket Controller Pro
Drive your mobile device with your desktop computer's mouse and keyboard. PC Pro provides a method for training/presenting mobile software or mobile devices. It contains tools for the following: Remote Control, Training Tools, File Explore, Task Manager, Screen / Video Capture, Presentation Tools, File Synchronization, Registry Editor, System Information, and Printing.

*Pocket Slide Show (see
Pocket SlideShow is a PowerPoint presentation viewer for Pocket PC, Smartphone and Handheld PC devices. Pocket SlideShow also includes an ActiveSync conversion filter that automatically adapts your presentations to Pocket PowerPoint format, thus significantly reducing file size. This is included as an example of software that deals only with the use of Powerpoint on a PDA.

A wireless remote control for your PowerPoint presentations which can be used with almost any device which includes a Web browser. Now you can use your existing Windows Mobile PDA, Palm, Treo, or cell phone to remotely control your slide presentation, wirelessly. You can connect using WiFi, the Internet, cell phone network, or via Bluetooth. This one included to demonstrate hardware used in presenting, but not for the purposes as defined for this fact sheet.

Toshiba PA3188U-1PRP expansion pack
This single unit allows you to edit your notes and prepare your slides, then connect your PDA to a projector to complete your presentation directly from your Toshiba Pocket PC e740, e750 or e755.


Product Comparison
Recommendations are highlighted in blue.

*This solution doesn’t conform to "presentation" as defined in the fact sheet, but is included to provide an example of what you may encounter when searching for presentation solutions.


Two recommendations were provided based upon how they handle screen output. The hardware software solution is designed for those who want to physically connect their handheld to a projector. The software only solution provides for display of the handheld using the supplied USB connection and software loaded on the PC and handheld.

  • Hardware/software – IA Presenter
  • Software – Pocket Controller Pro

Page last updated: 3/6/2009

NOTE: Questions or comments about the contents of this article should be addressed to the author, Joy Summers-Ables, at