Microsoft Teams testing option to save clicks when opening Office documents

Microsoft Teams PC
Microsoft Teams PC (Image credit: Windows Central)

What you need to know

  • Microsoft Teams public preview now has an option to open Office documents in the Office desktop apps by default.
  • Previously, Teams would open Office files directly within the app and then provide an option to open them on the desktop or web Office apps.
  • People can now choose between having Office documents open in Teams, the web, or the Office desktop apps.

Microsoft is testing a new option for Teams that gives people more of a choice regarding opening Office documents. The public preview version of Microsoft Teams now allows people to open Word, Excel, and PowerPoint documents in the desktop versions of the apps by default. Before this change, Teams would open Office documents within Teams and then show the option to open them in the web or desktop Office apps.

Microsoft explains the feature in a Tech Community post:

The Teams desktop and web apps for Windows and Mac now enable users to configure the default app used to open Word, Excel, and PowerPoint files that have been shared in Microsoft Teams.Users can configure Teams to open the file directly in Teams (default), open in the web browser, or open in the Word, Excel, or PowerPoint desktop apps.Prior to this feature rollout, clicking a PowerPoint, Word, or Excel file shared in Teams would open the file in Teams. Users could then select the option to open the file in the browser or Office desktop app.

Source: Microsoft (Image credit: Source: Microsoft)

This feature should save people a few clicks, especially if they always want to open a document in a specific version of an Office app.

The option has been available in Teams public preview since July 23, 2021 but was highlighted by a Microsoft engineer in a UserVoice forum (via MSPU).

Sean Endicott
News Writer and apps editor

Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at