Office Insider program: How to join & why should you

First exclusive access to Microsoft's latest innovations, all in your hand.

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Key notes

  • Microsoft always updates its Office 365 productivity apps for the better.
  • For those apps, Redmond officials have an Insider-only channel called Microsoft 365 Insider.
  • They would test new features before rolling them out for general users.

Microsoft always continues to innovate with its software, especially the 365 productivity apps like Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and more. To do so, Redmond officials usually roll out updates and experiments with new features on users that join its Office Insider program.

Long story short, this is similar to Microsoft’s Windows Insider program, but exclusively for office apps on Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android. The channel was announced first in 2015 as the Office Insider program but later rebranded as Microsoft 365 Insider in 2023 as a part of its transition from Office to Microsoft 365. 

“Our goals are to help you learn about all of the upcoming Microsoft 365 features, apps and services, and to deliver content that you are interested in, no matter which preview program or update channel the updates are released through.”

With that said, however, not everyone can join the Insider program. If you have your 365 license from school or work, you’d need to contact your administrator to move you to the program. Only those with a 365 Family or Personal subscription can install the builds.

So, how do I get in and what are the perks, you may ask? If you relate to these questions, then this article is for you. Here’s how to join Microsoft Office 365 Insider program and why should you.

How to join Microsoft Office 365 Insider program

1. Open any 365 program. Word, Excel, or PowerPoint would do.

2. On the upper left of your screen, click Account ➜ Product Information.

3. If you’re eligible, you should see the Office Insider button that you can click below Office Updates.

4. Click Join Microsoft 365 Insider.

5. In the Join Microsoft 365 Insider dialog box, tick the box next to the Sign me up for early access to new releases of Microsoft 365 check box.

6. Select the Insider channel you want, which we will explain in a bit. 

7. Click the box to agree to the terms and conditions.

8. Click OK.

What are the perks of joining the Insider program?

No matter how few those updates are, Microsoft always tests them on Insiders’ devices on the Office Insider before rolling them out for general users. 

Now, as Redmond officials are working closely for a better, newer generation of Microsoft Teams or the GPT4-powered Copilot for example, only Insiders will get the first access to those features before anyone else. 

Moreover, there are two Insider levels available called Beta and Current Channel (Preview). The difference between them is that Beta is dedicated to those who want to identify issues and provide feedback on features that are still far from primetime while Preview is most likely for first-time adopters — less frequent, more stable updates.

As you may also have guessed, you’ll also be more likely to encounter a few hiccups and bugs here and there while accessing builds from Beta, so it’s up to you to decide. 

Do you want to join the Office 365 Insider program? Let us know in the comments!

More about the topics: Microsoft 365