PowerPoint 2013 and 2016 features behave differently in earlier versions

Some PowerPoint 2013 features are unavailable or behave differently when you open the PowerPoint 2013 file in an earlier version of PowerPoint.

The screen capture below is an example of a compatibility checker alert that you could get if you create a presentation in PowerPoint 2013 (.pptx), and then try to save it as an earlier version (.ppt.) file format.

Compatibility checker alert

The table below includes certain features that are unavailable or degraded when you save your PowerPoint 2013 presentations in PowerPoint 97-2003.

PowerPoint 2013 component

Behavior in compatibility mode


If the presentation contains a chart where the cells appear outside of the supported row and column limit, those cells will not be saved and will not appear.

Drop shadows

Soft, outer shadows are converted to hard shadows that you can edit.

Gradient outlines on shapes or text


Heading and body fonts

Heading and body fonts are converted to static formatting. That is, when you open the file in an earlier version of PowerPoint you cannot change the text or the style formatting.

Levels of indentation

Some indentation levels are unavailable.

Multiple columns of text

These cannot be edited


Slides will not be grouped into sections

Shapes with or without text

These cannot be edited

SmartArt graphics with or without text

The SmartArt graphic or the text in it cannot be edited

Static Guides

If you add static guides to the slide master or to a layout in Slide Master view, the guides will not appear when opened in earlier versions of PowerPoint.

Strikethrough and double-strikethrough on text


Text effects, such as shadows, reflections, and glows



Some themes with shapes and placeholders can change them into pictures, which you cannot edit.


A transition effect made available in 2013 will not be available in earlier versions


Media clips inserted will be saved as pictures

WordArt Quick Styles


For more information about using PowerPoint 2013 with earlier versions, see Save a PowerPoint 2013 .pptx file to a .ppt format and Use compatibility mode to work with different versions of PowerPoint.

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