Collaboration in Keynote

4 min readFeb 20, 2019

Let me tell you, there are times that a presentation might have up to 13 versions with multiple files, sent back and forth between coworkers and sometimes it ends up a total mess. These days presentation projects are becoming more and more complex. It might not be enough to have only one person working on a project which might require content from different fields of expertise. Therefore, a software that enables simultaneous work, tracking changes, allowing version control and comments is a very needed tool.

Keynote enables users to share and collaborate in real time, whilst tracking changes just by sharing a link. This is possible since shared presentations are saved in iCloud. Therefore, you must be signed in with your Apple ID and have iCloud Drive turned on. Same applies to specifically invited people. If you invite someone using an email address or phone number that isn’t associated with their Apple ID, the person won’t be able to accept the invitation until they add the email address or phone number to their Apple ID. They also need to have either:

  • a Mac with macOS High Sierra 10.13 or later and Keynote 8.2 or later installed.
  • An iOS device with iOS 11 or later and Keynote 4.2 or later installed.
  • A Mac or Windows computer with a supported browser.
  • Anyone with an Android device, or an iOS device without iOS 11 or later and Keynote 4.2 or later, can view but not edit the presentation.

If you want to share a presentation here is what you can do:

Presentation access: You can send a presentation link that anyone can use to open the presentation. Or, you can invite specific people, who must sign in to iCloud with their Apple ID to open the presentation.

Editing permission: You can choose whether others can make changes to the presentation or only view it.

You can change access and permission settings or stop sharing a presentation at any time.

Unfortunately, there are some features that aren’t supported when the presentation is in collaboration mode. Here at the bottom of the page, you can see a full list of unsupported features.

Invite People from Your Mac

  1. Open the document that you want to share.
  2. In the toolbar, click the Collaborate icon with a plus mark.
  3. To set restrictions on who can view and change your document, click Share Options, then choose an option. By default, people that you invite can edit your document.
  4. Choose how you want to invite others to work on your document. Send an invite via mail, messages, AirDrop or Link.
  5. Click Share, then send or post the message.

A Collaboration icon with a checkmark appears and it becomes green at the top of your document when you turn on collaboration. This icon also shows how many people have the document open, not including you.

You can set restrictions on your document like:

  • If you want anyone who has the link to the shared document to be able to open it, choose “Anyone with the link”
  • You can set if you want them to be able to make changes or view only.

You can change these Share Options in the Collaboration menu at any time. Also, you can set specific permissions to specific people by clicking on the three dots next to their name. The color next to the person’s name is the same that indicates where is the person editing the document at that time. It appears only when the person has opened the document. You can hide or show the live collaboration activity tracking by clicking View > Hide Collaboration Activity/Show Collaboration Activity.

On Mac and iOS, you can edit a shared document only when your device is connected to the Internet. If it isn’t connected, or if you go offline while collaborating, the app displays an alert asking if you’d like to work on an offline copy of the document.

If you go offline while collaborating from, your changes won’t appear for others until you reconnect to the Internet.

Stop Sharing a Document

Open the document, then tap or click the Collaborate icon with a checkmark > Stop Sharing, then tap or click OK.

When you stop sharing, the document is removed from iCloud Drive for all participants. Even if you re-share the document later, the link will remain the same. If you set the document’s Share Option to “Only people you invite,” you will need to re-invite participants.

If you want to stop sharing the presentation and create a new link, you can duplicate the presentation and then share for collaboration.

And that is how you can manage your collaboration in keynote with ease!

Originally published at on February 20, 2019.


Boutique presentation agency on a single mission - truly effective presentations. We teach you how to present your business to win your audience.