How to get Microsoft’s Outlook.com beta right now

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Microsoft unveiled a new Outlook.com beta yesterday, complete with a refreshed search interface and plenty of GIFs. While the software giant is planning to roll this out in stages, it appears that not many people are seeing the opt-in “try the beta” toggle yet. If you’re still waiting, there’s actually a quick trick to get in early:

  • Load up Outlook.com in a browser as normal
  • Once loaded, navigate to the address part and replace the /owa/ section with /mail/ instead

It’s as simple as that, and it will even work if you’re an Outlook Premium subscriber. You’ll start to see the “try the beta” toggle as a result, but it won’t stick if you reload Outlook.com. You’ll have to manually edit the URL each time, as even navigating directly to the https://outlook.live.com/mail URL won’t work by itself. Don’t untick the “try the beta” toggle though, as this will permanently remove you from the beta interface, even with this workaround.

Microsoft is collecting feedback over at the Outlook uservoice site. New features include an improved conversation view, an updated and faster search interface, GIFs and emoji input, and the ability to tag restaurants in conversations. The new interface looks a lot cleaner than the existing Outlook.com, and it better matches the Mail client for Windows 10. Microsoft is expected to roll this out broadly later this year once testing is complete.

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