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Private audience: A new way to test your apps and games in production

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Steven P.    11,227
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One of the consistent themes that the Dev Center Team hears from the Windows developer community is that first impressions are important. Before launching a new app or game, it’s important to validate that the experience is working perfectly in production. At the same time, many developers may have disclosure concerns and want to control the announcement timing of new products. We’ve heard your feedback that testing in production before launch is critical to gain confidence in your products’ quality, and that you’d like to be able to do this testing without having the product visible to anyone beyond the intended audience.

 

To address this feedback, we’ve added a private audience capability in Dev Center. This new option is available now to all developers and allows you to publish an app or game that will be visible only the people you specify. No one else will be able to see that the product exists in the Microsoft Store, even if they somehow have a direct link to the Microsoft Store listing. This lets you validate the experience with the audience of your choosing, while keeping the product hidden from everyone else until you are ready to make the it visible to the public.

 

How does it work?  

Private audience uses known user groups (the same type of groups as with package flighting), and membership of these groups can be managed directly in Dev Center, without requiring the product to be republished every time you add or remove someone from the group. Only people in the groups you define who are authenticated with a Microsoft account will be able to see the app in the Microsoft Store. Any reviews left in the Store by your group members will be visible in Dev Center, but won’t appear on your Store listing.

 

How do I use it?

You can select which of your known users groups to make your new app or game visible to in the Visibility section of the Pricing and availability page of your submission. Additional known users can be added to your groups at any time, without requiring a new submission to change the members of the audience.

 

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More and source: https://blogs.windows.com/buildingapps/2018/03/28/private-audience-a-new-way-to-test-your-apps-and-games-in-production/

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