Apple will soon allow developers to respond to app reviews in the iTunes App Store, based on information discovered in the newly released iOS 10.3 beta version of the mobile operating system.
The documentation states, “When iOS 10.3 ships to customers, you will be able to respond to customer reviews on the App Store in a way that is available for all customers to see.”
Until now, reviews have not had the option for developers to respond. While opening up a reply option will help developers clarify negative reviews — features which may be misunderstood, or bugs fixed in a new update —it will also make it possible to respond to positive reviews.
It’s not the only new App Store review-related feature which may help developers increase overall ratings. Apple will change the way app users are prompted to leave reviews, primarily by not forcing a redirect from the app to the App Store itself. This lengthy process, often appearing in the middle of using an app, put many users off leaving reviews at all. The changes also include restrictions on the number of review prompts an app will show, and the chance for users to opt out of prompts entirely.
This is the first iOS 10.3 beta, which means features could change before final release.