Microsoft 365 update delivers a feature we've all been waiting for

Microsoft 365
(Image credit: Microsoft)

An update coming to Microsoft 365 web apps will allow users to switch freely between work and personal accounts at last.

Managing workloads when juggling a plethora of different email accounts can be a pain for the best of us. But with the latest update, Microsoft 365 users will no longer need to rely on finicky workarounds to switch contexts effectively.

Users will now be able to sign into multiple Microsoft accounts in the same browser, and switch between these accounts without needing to sign out and back in or use private browser windows.

According to Microsoft, this feature will benefit consultants who need to regularly access emails from different external companies, as well as consumer users switching between their corporate workloads and personal tasks like holiday planning to-do lists.

New Microsoft 365 feature

To get started with account switching, users need to access any of the Microsoft 365 web app and then click on the ‘Account Manager’ icon located in the top right corner.

From here, users can then add a new account or switch to an existing signed-in account in the browser. Upon a successful add or switch, the page will refresh with content from the new account in the same browser tab.

While a user can add multiple accounts in a Microsoft 365 web app, only one account will be active per app at a time.

If a user ends up with two or more browser app tabs with different accounts, Microsoft says users will be notified to refresh the tabs with non-active accounts.

Is it secure?

Microsoft noted that the new feature is not changing data access permissions or mixing data from different accounts and organizations, but merely helping to reduce the friction users face working with multiple accounts in the Microsoft 365 web apps.

Microsoft reiterated that each account would continue to only have access to the data which it has permission to access, and that it will maintain data integrity and privacy across different account and organizational boundaries

The new functionality is scheduled to be rolled out by June across the full productivity suite, spanning, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook , OneDrive, SharePoint, and Microsoft 365 admin center.

Will McCurdy has been writing about technology for over five years. He has a wide range of specialities including cybersecurity, fintech, cryptocurrencies, blockchain, cloud computing, payments, artificial intelligence, retail technology, and venture capital investment. He has previously written for AltFi, FStech, Retail Systems, and National Technology News and is an experienced podcast and webinar host, as well as an avid long-form feature writer.