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You Could Soon Be Blocked From Using Microsoft 365 Apps After This Stern Warning

by Vanessa Waithera
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You could soon be blocked from using Microsoft 365 apps.

MILLIONS of PC owners could find themselves blocked from Microsoft Word, Outlook, and Powerpoint this morning – unless they follow one simple bit of advice, Microsoft has issued a stark new warning.

Microsoft 365 users risk losing access to the subscription service’s hugely popular suite of apps, including Microsoft Word, Outlook, Powerpoint, and more. That’s because Microsoft has ended support for its Internet Explorer 11 and original (non-Chrominium) Microsoft Edge web browser. Anyone still using either of these ageing apps will be blocked from accessing online versions of Word, Powerpoint, Outlook, and others Microsoft apps included in their subscription.

It’s been a long time coming.

The decision to pull support from these apps, which are both still used by millions of users worldwide based on the latest statistics around browser market share, has been a long time coming.

The process of pulling support for the older web browsers started when Microsoft Teams lost support for Internet Explorer 11 in November 2020, with the legacy version of Microsoft Edge finally reaching its end of life in March 2021. Microsoft now includes its new version of Edge, which is based on the same underlying code as Google Chrome, with Windows 10 updates. It will also be the default browser included with Windows 11.

How will it affect people?

In the initial announcement, which dates back to August 2020, Microsoft announced that starting from August 17, Microsoft 365 would stop supporting Internet Explorer 11 too. Between the original announcement and the end of support today, Microsoft has given all 365 subscribers one year to prepare for this major change.

That said, this change has the potential to impact millions of people.

Despite Internet Explorer no longer being the flagship Microsoft browser, it is – according to figures from the trusted NetMarketShare – still the fourth most used browser in the world. Internet Explorer has a 3.28 percent share of the marketplace, compared to third-placed Firefox which has a 5.64 percent slice.

Edge is the second most popular browser, according to NetMarketShare stats for July, with an 11.41 percent chunk of the market. While Chrome is by far and away from the leader on 73.19 percent.

Speak in the run-up to today’s deadline, Microsoft said:

“Beginning August 17, 2021, Microsoft 365 apps and services will no longer support Internet Explorer 11 (IE11), and users may have a degraded experience or be unable to connect to, those apps and services.

“These apps and services will phase out over weeks and months to ensure a smooth end of support, with each app and service phasing out on independent schedules.

“If you encounter issues while accessing Microsoft 365 apps and services from IE11 after August 17, 2021, support will be unavailable. Additionally, you should expect no new features and that your daily usage experience could get progressively worse over time until the apps and services are disconnected.”

How to avoid the cut-off.

To avoid being impacted by this impending end-of-service cut-off, you simply need to install and use the Chromium-powered version of Microsoft Edge, which is the flagship browser from Microsoft right now.

If you choose to continue plugging away with Internet Explorer 11, you’ll just be delaying the inevitable. That’s because Internet Explorer is reaching its end of service in under a year’s time, which means it will no longer be supported by Microsoft – leaving users vulnerable to any bugs or glitches found in the software. End of support for Internet Explorer 11 kicks in from June 15, 2022.

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