- Windows is pretty awesome when it comes to letting users test experimental features.
- To encourage Windows users to test its new features, Microsoft is updating the Windows Insider Program.
- Microsoft's new Windows Insider program will soon let you test experimental features that may never make it to a public release.
The Windows Insider program provides a way for those who want to help shape the future of Windows to get early access to the latest software. It allows users to preview new features and applications before they are officially released.
As the name suggests, it’s meant for those who are enthusiastic about Windows and have time to test features that may never work well enough for a wider audience.
More recently, the Windows Insider program has evolved into something closer to an early access program that allows Microsoft to test out new features and services before they are ready for widespread use.
Changes to the Insider Program
The Windows Insider program has long provided a way for Microsoft’s most dedicated and optimistic users to test new features and bet on new Windows releases before they are officially released to everyone.
It’s also been a way for Microsoft to gather feedback from its customers on what they actually want and need in their operating systems. Now Windows 11 users will get a seat at the table.
The Windows Insider Program will be refocused as a “place to incubate new ideas” generally with a long lead-in time according to an announcement made by Windows Insider program lead Amand Langowski.
It is important to remember that the builds we release to the Dev Channel should not be seen as matched to any specific release of Windows and the features included may change over time, be removed, or replaced in Insider builds or may never be released beyond Windows Insiders to general customers.
Beta Channel not left behind
Microsoft may be altering its development process to allow more time for testing and less time for shipping.
The company has been moving toward this transition for a while now, with its software updates often pushed out without fanfare in the Windows Insider program.
But now, Microsoft is indicating that it’s willing to accept more risks in order to get features out faster.
The new Beta Channel is designed to let users test out new features that may never make it into a final release. The primary reason for this is that Microsoft wants to gather feedback from their most valuable customers about how things work.
Now’s a good time to start thinking about what Channel is best for you. We will soon be giving Insiders a window in which they will be able to switch from the Dev Channel to the Beta Channel. Stay tuned for details in the coming weeks.
This means that sometimes features will confusingly appear in the Beta Channel first, even though they’re almost ready for showtime.
The most notable changes will undoubtedly be new features that allow you to test out new features before they’re officially released to the public.
’We are energized by all the feedback we’re seeing from Insiders and excited to use those insights to make Windows 11 even better for our customers.
If you want to switch channels, visit our guide on how to migrate from the Dev channel to the Beta channel.
Are you excited to test out experimental features on Windows 11? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.