Microsoft Begins Testing Office Store Apps With non-Windows S Users

Posted on August 31, 2017 by Brad Sams in Office 365 with 18 Comments

Microsoft Defends Windows Store, Promises Improvements

With the release of the Surface Laptop (and Windows 10 S) earlier this year, Microsoft made available Office apps through the Windows Store. Well, they made it available only to those users running Windows 10 S with their shiny new Laptops but that is slowly changing.

Earlier this summer, Microsoft made it possible for nearly anyone to install Windows 10 S but unfortunately, you were not able to use the store Office apps. Why Microsoft was not letting these S users access the Office apps isn’t known but it looks like the company is now expanding the set of consumers who can access these apps.

The Windows Insider team has begun sending out invites to test out the new apps. The email says that the invite-only program is for a small sub-set of Insider community and the apps will work on Windows 10 Creators Update or later.

While these apps are still not yet available to everyone, this is an encouraging sign that they are slowly expanding the circle of who is able to access these apps. Also, this confirms my suspicion that anyone with a Surface Laptop has been a beta tester of the apps.

For now, there is not much you can do if you want to try out these apps but were not invited to the preview program. That being said, hopefully, we do not have to wait too much longer for the company to make these apps available to everyone.

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Comments (18)

18 responses to “Microsoft Begins Testing Office Store Apps With non-Windows S Users”

  1. jimchamplin

    Works like a charm, too!


    Ive installed Word on both a 10 Pro 1703 machine and a Lenovo lappy with 10 Home

  2. Lauren Glenn

    As I posted on Twitter and tried to get clarification from MJ Foley to understand this, I clicked the INSTALL button in the store where it promptly opened up a web browser and attempted to download the 32-bit version of Office 365.


    Meanwhile, the instructions said I had to uninstall my 64-bit version of Microsoft Office 365 to install this beta of Microsoft Office 365 which installs from a web page outside of the store.


    My head hurts trying to understand how this is better than just installing it from office365.com and having it auto-update periodically. Wake me when you solve this store issue, MS.

  3. bbold

    I participated in this and downloaded the Office 365 preview apps from the Store on a different machine I use and it all works beautifully. One issue: the store Install link would take me to office on the web to install as I had done previously, was directed to completely wipe out office and then try again (with a supplied Office uninstaller tool), and that worked. Everything looks same as before and can now be updated through the Store. So far, seems like a success.

  4. drews.tony

    I tried this on one of my Insider Preview machines. It installed as it said it would, I don't use the OneNote 2016 features that are not in the OneNote version installed, so that's not an issue. One thing that I have mixed feelings about - the updates for the office apps move from what I'm calling the "Office Update" system (where it automatically did things but you could force it to check and update immediately from within the office apps) to being a Windows Store update. After Install I ran the Windows Store update and got some funky actions. I THINK it updated to the latest Insider Preview version but I'm not terribly confident - I'd have a bunch of them stuck at "initiating download" (or something to that effect) and then the downloads would just go away. There are all sorts of articles on what to do when the Windows Store Updates stop working, so that doesn't fill me with confidence. Shades of trying to get WIndows 7 updates to run properly...


    It is good to see Win 32 apps available in the Windows Store, that seems like progress somehow, and goes a long way to making Windows S viable.

  5. Delmont

    Interesting that you have to un-install Office first.... I pay for Offiec 365 and am not sure worth the gamble to try these new versions out. I did receive the invite too.

    • Darekmeridian

      In reply to Delmont:

      These are not even the same 32 bit version that come for the )ffice365 site. If you check the version numbers they are special "Windows Store Versions" I think they are testing out things under the covers, and you of course should not be running this stuff on a production machine since it is part of the Insider Preview program

    • edboyhan

      In reply to Delmont: I had the same feeling. I received the invite, but I already have O365 Home installed on one insider machine, and an O365 E3 tenant installed on another -- just seems too complicated, and since I get both O365 versions through non retail channels (where the marginal cost for Office is $0), I will never have a desire to pay for O365 through the store (unless MS decides to broaden the SKUs available from the store).


  6. fishnet37222

    Skype for Business is also not available through the Windows Store yet.

  7. wshwe

    About time Microsoft! Office Apps should have been among the very first apps in the Windows Store.

  8. Cosmin Tătaru

    The installed package does not provide the OneNote 2016 Office program, leaves you with the OneNote app. Despite all progress made by the OneNote app team, this is a deal breaker for me, because I need certain OneNote 2016 features which are not yet in the OneNote app. I received the email invite too, installed yesterday but uninstalled today and went back to my Office 365 Pro E3 subscription.

  9. SherlockHolmes

    Everybody says UWP apps are way more secure and easier to Update. But no-one has explained to me why. Or proved it.

    • lvthunder

      In reply to SherlockHolmes:

      They are put in a sandbox so they can't mess up other apps. That's what they mean by more secure. They are easier to update because like your smart phone all the updates come from one place. The author doesn't have to include an update program in the code. On my work machine I have an updater for Office, Autodesk products, Java, Adobe, and a couple more I can't think of on the top of my head. With the store all those can go away.

  10. bsd107

    I got the invite, but don't want to install from the Windows Store unless I can install the x64 version?


    Is this possible, or are all store apps 32-bit only?

  11. Andrea Barbera

    Too bad it only installs the 32-bit version of Office.

  12. Waethorn

    This makes absolutely no sense. If this stuff is "stable" for Windows 10 S, why is it not available for proper Windows 10, which is a superset of 10 S? This lack of compatibility is a sure sign that 10 S and the Windows Store is a failure.

    • Darekmeridian

      In reply to Waethorn:

      I think you answered your own question there, it's not "stable" this preview was offered to Windows Insiders (testers). Not to make excuses but I think right now they are trying to work out deployment issues. I noticed version numbers are different than the normal 32 bit versions from the Office365 site, so I suspect there is more going on under the covers here.


  13. Marius Muntean

    No thanks...MS should have their own dedicated testers, no insiders as guinea pigs.

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