Apple has added a new “Answers from the community” section to its product pages on the Apple Store.
Something similar to this called “Questions and answers” has been around for awhile for accessories sold on the Apple site, but it’s now been expanded to Apple’s marquee Mac, iPad, iPhone, and iPod products.
The purpose of “Answers from the community” is right in the name. Visitors to the online Apple Store can submit questions about a product, such as “Will all the iPhone 4 accessories work with the 4S?” Anyone with an Apple ID can sign in and answer. Apple asks that users keep answers short and to the point; the compose page even has a simple graphical element reminiscent of a thermometer that warns when you’re starting to get excessively verbose.
Apple appears to be very heavily moderating user input on the service, which will come as no surprise to anyone who’s ever read a comment thread on a news post that mentions an Apple product. Answers left in “Answers from the community” can take up to one business day to appear after they’re uploaded, and it’s safe to say that any inflammatory rants about fanbois, Kool-Aid, or any number of other anti-Apple cliches won’t be approved.
The Next Web notes that some of Apple’s products seem to be pulling questions and answers from Apple’s support forums, possibly pointing to greater integration between the two areas of Apple’s site.
“Answers from the community” should prove to be a very useful tool for getting the most common questions about Apple’s products answered in a forum that’s just a click away from the product itself.