Of course you do and in this blog post I’ll explain how to get it.

A couple of weeks ago I wrote a blog post that explained the differences between Office 2019 and Office 365. If you missed it, you can read it here

As I explained in that post, each month Microsoft release a new “version” of Excel (and the other apps in the Office Suite) to Office 365 subscribers.

On Excel for Windows the versions have numbers in the format of YYMM (so for example 1903 for March 2019) and on Excel for Mac the versions have more traditional numbering. The version that I have installed on my Mac is 16.23.

You can check which version of Excel you have by selecting File > Account (on Windows) or Excel > About (on Mac).

Each time a new version becomes available, you are prompted to download and install it however exactly when these versions are released is known only by Microsoft. There is no consistency in their release schedule. I’ve even known two computers that are both signed in to the same Office 365 account to receive the same monthly update a week apart!

Office Insider Program

To get early access to the monthly updates you need to sign up to the Office Insider Program. This is available to both Windows and Mac users however only users subscribed to Office 365 Home or Personal Editions are eligible to sign up to it.

If you or your company/organisation have subscribed to one of the Office 365 Enterprise editions you can ask your System Administrator / IT Department to put you on the Monthly Channel (Targeted) program.

Once you have signed up to the program, you will receive the monthly updates 3-4 weeks ahead of users who are not on the program.

A Warning!

This advice comes with a caveat though… those of us who like to live on the “bleeding edge of technology” understand that it comes with a risk – the software that you install may be a little bit buggy.

This was proved in January when I updated to Excel 1902 only to discover a major bug in Excel’s Power Pivot add-in. I discovered this bug DURING a live training course that I was delivering…about Power Pivot!

Luckily there is a workaround and even better – Microsoft have fixed the bug in version 1903 (due for release in March 2019) which I was able to install yesterday, even though it is still only the middle of February