Taking a cue from the successful Windows Insider Program, which boasts over 7 million users, Microsoft has rebranded its early access program for Xbox One to the Xbox Insider Program. And it will soon be open to anyone, not just a select few.
“The Xbox Preview Program is becoming the Xbox Insider Program,” Microsoft’s Larry Hyrb revealed. “This new name reflects how we are expanding to offer opt-in opportunities to provide feedback on Game and App Previews alongside System Update previews.”
That new name also reflects how the rest of Microsoft brands its early-access programs. The Windows Insider Program has been so successful that other groups at Microsoft have asked Windows for help and advice on their own Insider Programs. And of course with Xbox now in the same business unit as Windows, it makes sense that these programs would work more similarly.
In tandem with the name change, Microsoft has released a Xbox Preview Dashboard—shouldn’t that be “Xbox Insider Dashboard,” Microsoft?–to testers. This new Dashboard includes:
- A new name, the Xbox Insider Hub
- Personalized to give you more relevant announcements, quests, and Insider content opportunities to get early access to select games and apps
- A new UI, inspired by the New Xbox One Experience, makes it easier to find the right info and provide more robust feedback
- The Xbox Insider profile card where your contributions in the program come front and center
- Support for multiple users on a console to participate and provide feedback
This new update is rolling out today to Preview members—sorry, Xbox Insiders—starting with those who have been providing the most feedback. Over the next few weeks, all existing Xbox Preview members will get access to the new Xbox Insider Hub, Microsoft says. I assume they mean Insiders. You get the idea.
But here’s the best news.
“The Xbox Insider Program will soon be open to all Xbox users,” Mr. Hyrb notes. “More fans will have the ability to provide feedback directly from their Xbox One consoles. The Xbox Insider Hub will provide great opportunities to try out games, apps, and other console experiences.”