New Prezi or Old Prezi – Which Should You Use?

There are two different Prezis – the old Prezi Classic and new Prezi Next. The original Prezi was renamed Prezi Classic when the new Prezi software was released in 2017. There is a distinct difference between the two. The original version of the presentation software was developed to publicly share ideas in a zooming, cinematic format. The new Prezi is focused on presenting ideas in a more structured format, with an emphasis on privacy and security. So which Prezi should you use for your next presentation?

The power of Prezi

When Prezi released its revolutionary presentation software in 2009, the world discovered an exciting new alternative to PowerPoint. Viewers are bored with poorly designed PowerPoint and Keynote presentations. The novelty of Prezi’s zooming transitions can catch a viewer’s attention with its novelty and encourage engagement with its non-linear, non-sequential style. Instead of static transitions, Prezi moves in and out of a three-dimensional framework. Concepts are presented in layers, which Prezi zooms in and out of. The upper layers show more general concepts – the bigger picture. Zooming farther in to the lower layers reveals more and more details.

Why did we need a new Prezi?

The original Prezi Classic software is a cloud-based program built on Adobe Flash technology. Because of Internet security issues, Adobe announced its decision to eliminate Flash. As a result, Internet browsers like Chrome, Firefox, and Edge started phasing out their support of Flash. Websites that still use it are gradually migrating to more stable HTML5 technologies. Prezi needed to separate itself from Flash, too. By 2020 all browsers will stop supporting Flash altogether, so we won’t be able to access Prezi Classic online. That’s why Prezi released a new Flash-free version of its zooming presentation tool. The new Prezi Next is a stable HTML5 platform. It will continue to run in all Internet browsers long after Flash is just a memory.

New users are denied a Prezi Classic account

When they released Prezi Next in April of 2017, the company made a bold and unpopular move. It cut off access to Prezi Classic to all future Prezi subscribers. If you already had a Prezi account – either free or paid – you can still access to your old Prezi Classic account. If you didn’t already have a subscription, Prezi will not allow you to use the old software. You only have access to the new Prezi Next. Consequently, many users just don’t have the choice of which Prezi to use.

Original users can choose either the old or new Prezi

Click the arrow to switch from the new PreziIf you opened your Prezi account prior to April of 2017, you signed up before the new Prezi was released. Consequently, you can still use the original Prezi that you signed up for. When you log in, you can choose which Prezi to use. The Your Prezis dashboard will initially be set to Prezi Next. Instead of a blue background with the Prezi Classic logo, you’ll see a black background with the new Prezi Next logo. To open Prezi Classic, click in the upper left corner next to the logo. This toggle switches you between the new Prezi and the old one. As easy as it is to switch between the two Prezis, you would think that it would be easy to import one into the other. Unfortunately, there is no way to convert Prezi Classic presentations to Prezi Next.

Viewing you old prezis online

Just because you can’t convert your old Flash-based prezis to the new HTML5-based software, doesn’t mean that your old presentations are now obsolete. The thing that die-hard Prezi Classic users don’t seem to understand is that they can still view and present their old presentations. Prezi has no plans to discontinue the original Prezi Classic. They won’t be adding features to it, but they will continue to support the original software.  They’ve even made allowances to view old Classic prezis in a non-Flash environment. They have provided an updated Prezi Player, built on WebGL, that lets you present Flash-based prezis without using Flash. With the new player, you can feel confident that any of your old Classic prezis will play successfully in HTML5.  Viewing and presenting your old prezis is not a problem, but editing those prezis is.

What happens when your browser blocks Flash for good?

In 2020, Adobe will pull the plug on Flash. Does this mean that Classic won’t be able to edit any of their old prezis? Not necessarily. You won’t be able to use the Editor in your browser, but you can run it locally in the Prezi Desktop app. If you subscribe at the Prezi Pro level, you can download Prezi for Windows or Prezi for Mac. The Prezi desktop version uses Flash, but because you’re not running it in a browser, it can’t prevent Flash from working. You can create, edit, and present offline. The desktop app has an option to keep your prezis local to your machine. So copy your old prezis and don’t sync the copies to your online account, This keeps them safe from Flash-blocking browsers. As a Prezi Classic user, you can upgrade to Prezi Pro at any time. Unfortunately, if you don’t already have a Classic account, you can’t upgrade to Prezi Pro.

Why you should use the Prezi Next

Prezi Classic is built on an outdated Internet technology. The new Prezi Next is much more stable and secure. It also has new features that the old Prezi never had. Its smart structures make it easier for conversational presenting. Plus, Prezi Next incorporates seamless viewer analytics, and expanded collaboration tools. Even though Prezi will continue to support it, they won’t make changes to Prezi Classic and they won’t add any new features. The new Prezi platform however, continues to grow and evolve. Updates are added to Prezi Next on a monthly basis. Recent features like zoom animations and custom starting point allow for more flexibility, making the new Prezi Next behave more like the old Prezi Classic.

The new Prezi or the old one – which should you use?

For newer Prezi users, the answer is clear. You must use Prezi Next since you can’t access Prezi Classic. The smartest course of action for users who started with the original Prezi, is to convert your old presentations to the new Prezi software. If that’s not an option, continue to present your old prezis in the updated Prezi Classic player. If you must make changes to an old prezi, use the offline Prezi desktop app. For all future presentations, use your new Prezi Next account. It’s different from what you’re used to, but it is a more stable and secure platform. Schedule a one-on-one coaching session with a Prezi Expert to make the transition to the new Prezi, or contact us if you need help converting your old prezis to the new Prezi Next.

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What do you want to do ?

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What do you want to do ?

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  1. Hello,

    If I download my Prezi Classic presentations, will I be able to play them forever, as downloaded files?

    I suspect Adobe Flash does not come into play in this scenario. Am I correct?


    • Yes, Kendall. You will be able to play your Classic Prezis as a downloaded presentation. Portable Prezis are not affected by the Flash issue since they don’t run in an Internet Browser.

  2. Just make prezi next work like classic, and no one will be angry. It’s really that simple. The control and power of classic is not “out dated,” it’s actually supremely paramount. I can’t do much of ANYTHING in next which is standard and simple in classic.

    • I won’t argue with you, Neil. There is much more power in Prezi Classic because you are free to adjust the structure and movement. Prezi Next is much more limiting because of the layering and sequence used in the smart structures. Hopefully Prezi will be loosening their stranglehold on our creativity as the new software develops and matures.

  3. Prezi Classic was a revolutionary platform for education. I used it in my lectures not only as a program to deliver course content but also as a platform for interacting with and engaging students. The ease of use in Prezi Classic both for the presenter and in my case for students were magical! Prezi Next is nothing comparable, and does not have that potential. It seems that it aims to be a more elaborate Power Point! And that’s not a user like me is looking for.

    • I can understand where you’re coming from. Prezi Next has many limitations. You can no longer use it like a mind map. It is limited to a set outline structure. Don’t give up on Prezi yet. There are changes coming in the near future that will add more freedom to the platform. I’ll keep my mailing list informed of updates. Be sure to sign up if you haven’t already.

    • There is currently no easy way to convert a Classic prezi into a Next prezi. You will need to start a Prezi Next presentation from scratch and copy your content from the old prezi into the new one.

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