Microsoft wants to evolve the Insider Program with "Cohorts"

Microsoft is working on improving the quality of Windows Feedback with a new "Cohorts" program. As Windows Central reports, Cohorts is a new way of receiving dedicated feedback from "highly-focused" groups of Windows Insiders, rather than generalised feedback from general users. For the first trials of Cohorts, the firm has identified "groups of people with a common passion, characteristic, or area of expertise", and will use their capabilities and experience to bring insights into how certain Windows features in preview are used.

For instance, let's say Microsoft introduces a new set of music production tools in an upcoming Windows build. The firm would find a "Cohort" of Windows Insiders who are either passionate about music or have expertise in it and work with them to develop the feature according to their needs. In this case, feedback from general users who may find this feature unnecessary would be either unhelpful or redundant.

Instead of building features which are aimed at everyone and end up pleasing no one, Cohorts ensures that Microsoft remains user-focused and that features are useful for the sub-group they are targeted at. Microsoft is unlikely to eliminate the existing feedback pipelines like telemetry and the Feedback Hub for Cohorts, they will reportedly be launching it as a complementary tool should it take off.

The firm is already testing Cohorts now, with invite-only groups existing for Fluent Design, Insider MVPs and (visual) creators at the moment.

While Cohorts is in preview, it remains an experiment in a different way of receiving feedback. Like all previews and tests, there are no guarantees that it'll be rolled out eventually. In the event that it does, Microsoft will be expanding Cohorts to all Windows Insiders.

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