Last month, Sanjeev Mishra from SliderVilla sent an email to me asking for a review of their plugin – Pointelle Slider – a post content slider for WordPress. After looking at the plugin, I think it’s a quite good content slider plugin for WordPress end users and just wrote this review to let you know more about the plugin: what are its advantages, what are disadvantages and what I wish to be improved. SliderVilla also offers 5 premium licences of Pointelle Slider for Deluxe Blog Tips’s readers. So, read and enjoy!

Pointelle Slider is a post content slider for WordPress. It has a design with left or right panel for post navigation, which is often used in some magazine themes. The big advantage of this slider is it allows you to control many things in the slider without knowledge of CSS, HTML or coding.

Pointelle Slider

Pointelle Slider

Pointelle Slider

Things I like

This plugin comes with a lot of features, and here are some highlights of it:

1. Intensive options for customizing the look and feel.

With Pointelle Slider, you can customize color, font size, font style, border style, etc. For every element of the slider without touching to CSS. Everything is selective in the admin area.

Look and feel

But we know we can’t style everything with UI (that will never be in any plugin or software), imagine when you want to style the first char of post title, or other very small things. That’s why the Pointelle Slider plugin also provides you a custom CSS option where you can style anything you want. You can also see the generated CSS by plugin to see which classes are used for better styling.

2. Responsive slider.

Responsiveness is a trending in all sliders, including Pointelle Slider. This plugin allows you to select the image sizes for popular predefined screen sizes.

Responsiveness

3. Many options for controlling image, post title, content, etc.

These options including:

  • transition effect and timing. The plugin offers you 4 basic effects: fade, veritcal sliding, horizontal sliding and uncovering. This is not many, but enough for use.
  • where you pull the image from post (from post thumbnail, custom field, attached image or post content) or using video
  • whether or not use lightox effect
  • image size is used,
  • change position of post title
  • show/hide post description
  • where to get post description (post excerpt, post content or custom field)
  • show/hide previous/next navigation arrow
  • position of navigation panel (left/right)
  • etc.

Settings

You also can change the settings for each post like slide link URL, thumbnail URL, navigation title etc.

Post Edit

This is a big benefit of this plugin in comparison with others. Very useful for beginneers or end users who doesn’t know (or want) to code (did I mention it has preview feature right in the admin page?).

4. Ability to create slider from recent posts, posts in one category, or manually selected posts.

For each type of slider, the plugin offers you corresponding function and shortcode to display the slider:

For example, to display slider from posts in category ‘social-media’, you can use:

<?php if ( function_exists( 'get_pointelle_slider_category' ) ) { get_pointelle_slider_category('social-media'); } ?>

Or use shortcode:

[pointellecategory catg_slug='social-media']

You also have 3 widgets to display slider on your sidebars: Recent Posts Slider, Category Slider, Simple Slider. Basically they are the same as using functions or shortcodes. The author of plugin just made sliders can be used in various ways, which is good.

Things I dislike

1. Settings page style

It doesn’t follow WordPress UI style (more consisely, use only a small part of WordPress UI style). That makes the plugin not professional and look bad. As a WordPress developer, I prefer using same WordPress style for everything!

My suggestions:

  • Use WordPress UI, especially tabs (or meta box) for settings page. See this tutorial by Chip Bennett to see how to create tabs for settings page.
  • Improve design for settings page, including graphic icons, panel styles, input boxes style, etc.

2. User experience

I mean the plugin needs to improve the process of creating slider, how to change settings for each slider, how to assign posts to slider, etc. The plugin already has these features, but not quite good in my opinion. I had a hard time setting up my first slider.

My suggestions:

  • Auto setup all the needed settings for new slider, and hide all advanced settings. People want the fastest way to setup sliders like demo, and the plugin should implement that via only few clicks!
  • Display guiding steps somewhere in the plugin settings page, so I know exactly what I’m doing and what I have to do next to make my slider runs.
  • Better settings page for each slider. I need only 1 settings page for 1 slider: settings, reorder slides, edit post settings, etc. Right now, I have to go to 3 pages to setup a slider: main settings page for slider settings (such as efffect, timing, navigation panel), slides settings page to reorder posts in the slider, and individual posts edit page to change link for each slide. That’s very bad experience. I want something quicker, easier to follow (and understand) and not go to another page just to style 1 thing!

Maybe the author of the plugin should look at Nivo SliderWooSlider or Soliloquy Slider for WordPress.

3. I would love to have more beautiful predefined styles

Not all users have ability to design (or customize to get) a beautiful slider, including me! All I did is just select a predefined styles, and changed it a bit. That’s why if I have a list of beautiful styles, I’ll be happy using the plugin!

4. I’d love to see more comments in plugin code!

I don’t know if the plugin author has his own version where he puts all comments, explainations for code, but in the premium version I have now, there’s few comments, and it’s hard for developers like me to change the plugin behaviours.

5. Custom hooks

And last thing: if the plugin provides custom hooks for developers to customize, that’ll be a big improvement! WordPress is strong for one reason of its hook system. Genesis framework is powerful because it has a lot of custom hooks. And I think every professional plugin should have custom hooks – that’s really good for users if they want to change something of the plugin without having to modify the core.

Conclusion

In my opinion, Pointelle Slider is a good plugin. It’s really helpful for end users who like the design and don’t want to touch to code. Lots of options for slider and for look and feel. And if it can improve the user experience, I think it would be a great plugin!

Giveaway

SliderVilla is going to giveaway up to 5 premium licenses of Pointelle Slider for Deluxe Blog Tips’s readers. Join now!

How to win

  • Tweet about this giveaway, don’t forget to mention @rilwis in your tweet!
  • Subscribe to this blog via email or RSS
  • Leave a comment below to let me know you’re in!

This giveaway will end on 2013-04-20 12:00

This giveaway is ended and here are the winners.

Pointelle Slider

The winners will be contacted by Slider Villa soon. Thank you all for join in the contest. And for anyone who didn’t have chance to join the contest, you still can buy the plugin with a low price $9.0:

[button link=”http://www.deluxeblogtips.com/r/pointelle” color=”black” target=”_blank” rel=”nofollow”]Get the plugin with $9[/button]

11 Comments

  1. Tweeeted – I think! Still don’t have this tweeting stuff going on yet. Already subscribed to you via email. And I would enjoy getting a copy of this plugin to work with. Thanks!

  2. Congratulations to the winners of SliderVilla Pointelle Slider Giveaway. We are happy to let everyone know that our sales team has already sent the premium license of Pointelle Slider to all 5 winners.

    Thanks once again Rilwis for putting such a detailed review of Pointelle Slider WordPress plugin. Keep up the good work.

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