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This is why you should join the Office Insider Program now

Office 2016 is one of Microsoft's best versions of its office suite to hit the market. It was released in September 2015 for Windows and Mac. But due to its groundbreaking features and innovations, it started generating hype long before then. A Microsoft Office 2016 Preview:Smart and Subtle Changes A Microsoft Office 2016 Preview:Smart and Subtle Changes Office 2016 for Mac has just been released in the fall. We show you the new look and features of the world's most popular productivity suite. Will you update? Read more.

Don't have it yet? You can choose from several paths to upgrade to Office 2016 Upgrade to Office 2016 for free today with your Office 365 subscription Upgrade to Office 2016 for free today with your Office 365 subscription Microsoft Office 2016 for Windows is here, and it brings lots of smart new features. If you have an Office 365 subscription, you can get it now for free, and we'll show you how below. Read More However, the easiest way is to simply buy an Office 365 subscription. An introduction to Office 365:Should you buy the new Office business model? An introduction to Office 365:Should you buy the new Office business model? Office 365 is a subscription-based suite that offers access to the latest Office desktop suite, Office Online, cloud storage, and premium mobile apps. Does Office 365 provide enough value to be worth the money? Read More (which students can get for free Students can get Microsoft Office 365 for free Students can get Microsoft Office 365 for free Starting December 1, universities that license Office Education for their faculty and staff can offer students Office 365 ProPlus students for free. Read more).

Office 365 subscription comes with a free and voluntary program 11 Office 2016 FAQs Answered 11 Office 2016 FAQs Answered Office 2016 is coming up and it raises a lot of questions. Do you have to buy a subscription, can you upgrade now, and can you go back to Office 2013? We collect the most frequently asked questions and provide the... Read More This Office Insider Program provides several benefits that can be useful. Here's why you should sign up today.

1. Early access to new features

The main and most loved aspect of the Office Insider program is that Microsoft ships Early Access builds that you can try before those builds are publicly available. That's what it means to be an Insider:you become part of this special insider group.

With these early access builds, you can essentially play and experience all the new features and bug fixes that will eventually be available to everyone, but you won't have to wait like they do. For people who love being on the cutting edge of technology 5 reasons why being an early adopter is a bad idea 5 reasons why being an early adopter is a bad idea are you the type to pre-order of the newest technological devices as soon as possible? They're available? So you are an early adopter. Is there a drawback? Let's find out. Read More

This is similar to the First Release builds that are available for Office 365 for commercial customers, except Office Insider is available to nobody who subscribe to Office 365, including Office 365 Home, Office 365 Personal, and Office 365 University.

The early access period can be anywhere from a few weeks to a few months early, depending on how long it takes Microsoft to perfect the build and fix any serious issues that may have gotten past their QA team.

So instead of waiting three months for that new feature, you could have it now. Very good, right? Just keep in mind that these early builds won't always be perfect. If you can't afford that risk, you might be better off not signing up.

2. Insider previews are cross-platform

If you think the Office Insider Program is only for Windows users, think again! When it was released in 2015, it supported early access builds for Windows 10, Windows 10 Mobile, and Android. In 2016, Microsoft also extended support for Mac versions of Office.

In other words, you can now get insider previews for all Microsoft Office compatible devices except iPhones and iPads. As of now, there is no indication if Microsoft intends to extend platform support to those devices.

3. Your development of forms of feedback

One of the worst feelings as a software end user is when you submit bug reports and feedback only to find that your words were never taken into account. At best, they were missed. At worst, they were ignored. Either way, it sucks.

Microsoft is not offering the Office Insider Program out of the goodness of their hearts. It's actually a way of gathering user feedback and experiences before each build goes live, so it's like a big beta test in a way. What does "Beta Software" really mean? What does "Beta Software" really mean? What does it mean for a project to be in beta and do you care? Read More

Every product in the Office line (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, Access, and OneNote) has a UserVoice suggestion box. Not only can you submit ideas, but you can also vote on ideas submitted by others. Any idea that gets at least 20 votes has a good chance of getting an official response.

It's an effective system that makes you feel more involved than if you were just submitting comment forms and nebulous emails. Do you want to play a role in the development of Office? So the Office Insider program is calling your name.

4. Get support from other experts

Remember, the builds you get as an Office employee won't always be perfect. In fact, you should probably assume that every build will come with bugs (and count them as good luck when they don't). This means that you will probably run into problems from time to time when features don't work as expected.

Fortunately, Microsoft provides a special section of its forum community, where Office Insiders can ask questions and get support from other Office Insiders. You can filter posts by individual and Office products individual devices and platforms.

The great thing about this community is that everyone who participates here is someone who knows enough about the Office line to sign up for the Insider Program and find their way to the forum. The community isn't huge, but it's pretty helpful nonetheless.

How do I become an Office employee??

Grabbing the latest versions of each build is very simple. There's a unique process for each individual platform, but once you've signed up on each relevant device, there's nothing else you need to do.

For windows: For Office 365 Home, Office 365 Personal, and Office 365 University subscribers, simply go to the Additional Installation Options page of your Office 365 account and choose the Insider versions of the office apps you want to install.

If you have an Office 365 Business or Office 365 Enterprise subscription, Microsoft recommends deploying the First Release version instead. (Functionally speaking, this is the same as the Office Insider build.)

For Mac: You must have Office 2016 for Mac installed. Launch and navigate the menu bar to Help> Check for updates . You should see a box labeled Join the Office Insider Program... , which must be marked affirmatively. From then on, you will be notified when new builds are available.

For Android: Visit the Office Insider for Android page on Google+ and click Join the Community . Once enrolled, you'll get access to install preview versions of Word, Excel, and PowerPoint that are available on Google Play. (Direct links are available on the Google+ page).

For Windows 10 Mobile: Head over to the Windows Insider Program page and sign up for that. This gives you access to download and install the Windows 10 Mobile Insider Preview builds that you can get through the accompanying Windows Insider app. (First check if your mobile device is compatible).

Learn more about Office 365

There are many reasons to consider upgrading to Office 2016 13+ Reasons to upgrade to Microsoft Office 2016 13+ Reasons to upgrade to Microsoft Office 2016 Microsoft Office 2016 is here and it's time for you to make a decision. The productivity question is:should I upgrade? We're bringing you new features and new reasons to help... Read More constant evolution. earlier versions of Office.

At this point, the myriad improvements may make you feel too intimidated to upgrade. If that's the case, don't worry. Just check these tips to learn Office 2016 9 Tips to learn everything about Office 2016 9 Tips to learn everything about Office 2016 Microsoft Office 2016 is among us. How are you mastering the latest version for the sake of your productivity? We recommend the best links for learning Office. Steal a gear with these... Read More

If you decide to participate, here's everything you need to know about managing your Office 365 subscription How to manage your Office 365 subscription How to manage your Office 365 subscription How to get started with Office 365? Make sure you are in full control of your account and subscription settings with this guide. Read more . Otherwise, if you're not sure if Office 365 is right for you, here's everything you need to know to decide which Office suite is right for you. Which Office suite is the best for you? Which office suite is best for you? You will be pressured to find an occupation that does not require word or number processing of any kind. And you may be wondering, is Microsoft Office really the best solution? Here are your options. Read more.

What do you think about the Office Insider Program? Is the promise of early access to the build enough to convince you to sign up? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!