Office 365 First Release Program Announced

Office 365 First Release Program Announced

User experience, SharePoint Online part of bleeding edge opt-in

Microsoft announced today its First Release program for Office 365 user experience, SharePoint Online, and Exchange Online. Early adopters can opt to receive new feature updates two weeks before they’re released to the rest of Microsoft’s Office 365 customers.

The updates you can opt to receive early are a select few. Missing from the First Release program at this time, for example, are updates to Lync Online, Exchange Online Protection, and Office 365 ProPlus, as well as other updates.

Unless you opt in, you’re already part of the Office 365 standard release group. The standard release group receives its new feature updates two weeks after those that are released as part of the First Release program.

Microsoft began rolling out the First Release program opt-in this week.  To opt in, go to the admin portal for Office 365 and select First Release under service settings and navigate to Admin, Service settings, Updates.

To learn more, see the heading “Move to the front of the line with First Release” in the post “Improving visibility to service updates” published in the Office 365 team blog on 6/19/14.

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