Just recently, Microsoft revealed that app developers would be able to respond to user reviews in the Windows Phone Store. Now, Microsoft has taken the first step in making this highly-desired feature happen by launching a private pilot program.
"This new capability enables developers to respond to reviews of Windows Phone apps directly from Dev Center. Once you create a response, users will receive the comment via email from Microsoft and can even contact you directly if you included your support email address in the app submission ‘Support email address’ metadata," Microsoft stated in an official blog post.
During Build 2014, Microsoft showcased the ability for app developers to reply directly to app reviews. The process is simple and allows for the reviewer to see what the developer has to say about their comment and possibly even update their app rating if necessary. This is a huge improvement to the Windows Phone Store, allowing app developers to potentially eliminate unnecessary bad ratings and directly respond to those who are facing specific app issues or bugs.
"This capability is designed to help you maintain closer contact with users to inform them of new features, bugs you’ve addressed, as well as get feedback and ideas to improve your app. This capability is not to be used for marketing and does not provide you as the developer with the user’s personal information, such as an email address," Microsoft explained.
This feature works on reviews posted from Windows Phone 8.1 devices, as well as reviews posted from any Windows Phone device in the US only.
A small pilot group of developers have been selected to participate in this program and additional developers will be invited in May. "Invitations will be prioritized based on app downloads and the pace of the roll-out will be driven by user feedback," Microsoft explained.