Here's how Microsoft will determine which Xbox Insider ring you'll start in

Yesterday, Microsoft released the first preview build of the Creators Update for the Xbox One, and at the same time, it finally opened up the Xbox Insider Program to system updates. While Insiders are surely happy for their newfound privileges, the change is not without its caveats.

There will be four rings: Alpha, Beta, Ring 3, and Ring 4. Here's a refresher:

  • Xbox One Update Preview Alpha – The first Preview ring, this group typically receives 2-3 new system updates per week during a Preview Update wave. Preview Alpha is the cutting edge, and users in this group receive access to new features and fixes as soon as possible at the expense of potential bugs.
  • Xbox One Update Preview Beta – The second Preview ring, this group typically receives 1-2 new system updates per week during a Preview Update wave. Preview Beta users receive frequent system updates and early access to new features and fixes, with somewhat less risk of encountering bugs.
  • Xbox One Update Preview Ring 3 – The third Preview ring, this group typically receives 2-3 new system updates per month during a Preview Update wave. Preview Ring 3 users receive infrequent system updates, and is suited for users who want early access to new features and fixes with less risk of encountering bugs.
  • Xbox One Update Preview Ring 4 – The fourth and final Preview ring, this group typically receives new system updates about once per month. Preview Ring 4 users receive system updates which are almost ready for public release, and thus receive the fewest system updates and are least likely to encounter bugs. In some cases, Preview Ring 4 users may also receive updated versions of the current publicly released build incorporating new fixes.

As we learned yesterday, the top three rings have limited capacity, so they will be invitation-only. This can be earned by being more active in the Xbox Insider Program.

But not all members will start out in Preview Ring 4. We reached out to Microsoft to confirm how it would decide which members would initially end up in which rings.

For one thing, the company confirmed to Neowin that those that were part of the Xbox One Preview Program before it became the Insider Program are in the Preview Alpha ring. This is why those particular Insiders received the Creators Update preview yesterday, which was released to Alpha.

Where it seems to get tricky is for newer members of the Insider Program. Microsoft told us that it will be populating the top three rings over the next "several weeks", beginning with Alpha. Presumably, if you didn't get the Creators Update preview yesterday, you didn't make the cut. This placement will be decided based on how active you've been in the Insider Program.

Unfortunately, if you're even newer to the Program - such as if you heard about yesterday's update and then decided to sign up - you won't be placed into any ring until all four rings have been populated. This means that if you sign up for the Xbox Insider Program right now, you'll probably be waiting for a few weeks to get a preview build.

Oh, and there's one more thing. Once you work your way to the top, you have to keep working. If you stop earning your place in whichever ring you're in, you can be dropped from it.

If you want to sign up for the Xbox Insider Program, you an do so by downloading the Xbox Insider Hub from the Store and running it. To check which ring you're enrolled in, open the app, select Insider Content, and under System, select Xbox One Update Preview and then Manage.

Report a problem with article
Next Article

Some users are getting access to Instagram Live Video on Windows 10 Mobile

Previous Article

Windows 10 build 14393.726 for PC and Mobile is rolling out to the Release Preview ring

6 Comments - Add comment

Advertisement