No, developers can't delete your app review

Someone brought this up in our comments recently, and it's worth a quick mention here. As far as we know, there's no way for developers to delete your review of their app in Google Play. They can reply to your review, but not delete your review. And that makes sense for any number of reasons.

Developers do get a little extra information when you leave a review, however. And that's a good thing for when it comes to troubleshooting. In particular they'll receive:

  • Application version code: That's a separate, internal versioning system that you don't actually see in the app listing. (For instance the Android Central app (opens in new tab) is currently on version 50.)
  • Version name: This is the one you're more used to and see listed in Google Play. Currently we're on v2.3.7.
  • Device: Devs get the general model — "Nexus 6" — plus its individual codename, such as "shamu." As of the time of this writing there are more than 11,500 individual devices supported in Google Play. The Android Central app supports more than 9,700.
  • OS: The version of Android you're running. Android 5.1.
  • Screen density (dpi): In dots per inch, can help with troubleshooting and knowing which platform you're on.
  • Manufacturer: Samsung. Google. Whomever.
  • Native platform: This saves the dev from more guesswork. x86, armeabi-v7a, armeabi, etc.
  • OpenGL ES version: Again, helps with troubleshooting.
  • Device type: Phone? Tablet? Animal? Vegetable? Mineral?
  • Screen size: It's resolution, not size, but you get the idea.
  • Device language: English, Spanish, whatever. More info.

And here's what it looks like in the developer console.

That's it. A little bit of useful information when responding to reviews and troubleshooting problems. But nowhere is there a way to delete reviews.

  • Just curious, can they petition Google to remove a review and if so, what's that process like?
  • I dont think there should be a system like that. Users can add/delete reviews and developer should not have that option. and to answer your question, No you cannot petition at this moment
  • Agree. Google can remove things like hate speech and other things that violate their rules, but they either remove legit ratings or reviews. Posted via the Android Central App on Nexus 6 Assassin Edition. Android Central Moderator, Gonfaloniere.
  • For the record, none of my reviews have violated Google rules. A negative review is still a valid review as long as its gripes are legitimate.
  • Agree, the report system should be suffice for app developers if a review doesn't seem like a review. I also think planted good reviews should be investigated as to not boost ratings because for reasons like you had bad reviews or not enough reviews. I.E. Co-workers putting up good reviews of their own company on Yelp.
  • Who do they think they are? Yelp? :) Posted via the Android Central App
  • I wish they could cause some of them are straight up ignorant.
  • Oh god they so are. An example - Sony is currently updating their apps to support Marshmallow. One review said something like "So Sony is updating their apps to Marshmallow, yet they haven't even released Marshmallow for my phone yet?! Update your phones first, then worry about the apps!" Apparently this person would prefer their phone ran 6.0, but none of the system apps worked properly. I'm sure I've seen worse, but that one is fresh in my mind. Posted via the Android Central App
  • Oh there are some real idiots out there. My favourite reviews are on games like Modern Combat (you need serious hardware to play the recent ones well) going "This game is terrible it doesn't work on my phone I have a [generic super cheap terrible 3 year old phone] fix or I'll uninstall 1 star", complete with lack of punctuation and dismal spelling. Blackberry Priv
    Nvidia Shield "Portable"
    Sony Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact
  • Or how about the one star ratings when people believe a paid game should be free just because they want it to?
  • The ones that really kind of annoy me are the joke reviews for stupid apps. It's not so much that the people are joking, but i see so many people put it at 5 stars! So they not realize that setting an app at 5 stars will make it more likely that other people will try the useless/poorly made app?
  • My favourite to day is when apps include in their description, with capital, that it "NEEDS XY PROVIDER ACCOUNT TO WORK", and then dozens of 1-star reviews because 'It does not work without an xy account'. WTF. Best part is? Many banking apps are like this. Imagine your bank releasing an official app, and getting dozens of 1-star reviews just because it does not work with an opposing banks' backend.
  • Phone? Tablet? Animal? Vegetable? Mineral? xD nice
  • If you say so Phil, but I've seen my reviews disappear repeatedly. I stopped giving them for this reason alone.
  • They go up and down the list on user decided helpfulness. Posted via the Android Central App
  • Yes, but if you post it, it should stay above the main list of reviews, where the rating stars are. I've rated an app, come back half an hour later, it's still there. Come back the next day, and it's gone.
  • Often the reviews tend to be sorted by "helpfulness" as rated by others on Google Play. If yours is recent it's likely it hasn't be voted as "helpful" like the other ones have been. Blackberry Priv
    Nvidia Shield "Portable"
    Sony Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact
  • But isn't it meant to keep yours (and/or reviews of your friends) at the top of the list?
  • Your reviews appear above the list entirely.
  • I've seen this happen too. Also, sometimes when I edit my review and come back after some time it will show the original review and not the edited one.
  • I have the same problem, one of my friend give a review on my app I checked that review immediately it was in list, about after one minute I refresh the review page it was gone. Now I can see review statistic graph but not reviews. I am facing this problem from last couple of days.
  • It's not about me saying so. It's simply not true.
  • I've gone back to change my rating and review content several times and more often than not, the higher rating review seems to stick. If I had a 5 star with a review at one point, but then something goes downhill with the app, I'll change my rating to 4 or 3 stars and the explanation as to why, but when I come back to the app, my original 5 star rating and review is the only one showing. It's happened way too many times on completely different apps to be a 'fluke'. It's a real thing, regardless of what's being claimed. Whether or not it's deliberate by a developer, I don't know, but it does happen.
  • Maaaayybe there's some sort of semi-automated approval process they go through prior to it being properly posted..? (Wild speculation) Blackberry Priv
    Nvidia Shield "Portable"
    Sony Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact
  • That or maybe there's a syncing issue. I get this in some apps where I'll make a change and it'll be forgotten either because it was lost in translation between my phone and their server or it just hadn't been processed yet.
  • Same thing has happened to me, and more than once.
  • thats not true. you are just ignorant or lying
  • There must have been some other issue with your review being posted or not on Play. Believe me I are not able to delete user reviews given to my app. Even if how much F***s were given by the user to my app of whatever reason it may be. :)
  • I gave bad reviews that disappeared as well. When I check the next day it shows I have no review. I'd add the bad review again and it'll show I have no reviews for it the next day. Google Nexus 6P
  • I reply to all the reviews I can for my apps. And some users have the courtesy to go in and edit their review and rating after I fix an issue they had. No such luck when it comes to reviews on the Apple App Store.
  • Can you even reply to and/or edit reviews on Apple's App store? Blackberry Priv
    Nvidia Shield "Portable"
    Sony Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact
  • Nope, it's irritating. Especially when someone posts something that isn't true. Posted via the Android Central App
  • My BlackBerry ® Priv officially displays it's self as BlackBerry stv100-4 which is so dull. Than again Priv sounds toilet and this coming from somebody who's had a Blackberry for over 6 years..... Posted via the Android Central App
  • Priv doesn't sound THAT bad.. Sure it's a pretty dumb name as far as phone names go but it's not as bad as some of those phone names from the manufacturers in India or China for example. Blackberry Priv
    Nvidia Shield "Portable"
    Sony Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact
  • Priv - Privy - toilet. Posted via the Android Central App
  • I've seen my negative reviews gone the next day from certain apps (YouTube is one of them). The last review you left should be up top where it allows you to edit or delete it. Until this is explained I can't entirely believe this. Posted via the Android Central App
  • At least I'm not the only one to see this.
  • What happens when you click on the rating? Posted via the Android Central App
  • Well, my review of News Republic is still up from a month ago. I even said "I feel like I've been robbed" in reference to that app replacing BlinkFeed.
  • No there's actually a proven conspiracy. They really are deleting your post. It's all part of the Illuminati plan to take over the world and control you. You should stockpile a years worth of food, dig a 40 foot deep hideout in the woods, and gather the troops at the gate. First they take your rights away little by little, the rich keep getting richer and etc etc for the poor, and now they're deleting your reviews. Now is the time to fight for your lives, fight FOR THE KING... AND FIGHT FOR YOUR COUNTRY!! Our reviews shall not be squashed!! Not today! FREEEEEDOMMMM!! Posted via the GS6 Active, aka GS6 M.E. (Manly Edition)
  • I reviewed a Verizon app and my review disappeared twice already. I just placed a third review and I am just waiting to see what happens.
  • I hope you guys have reviewed and rated the AC App. It makes a difference, and obviously people look at them. Posted via the Android Central App
  • Simple, yet very interesting little post. Keep those comin'
  • This is a non issue planted good reviews should be the focus. Smh Posted via the Android Central App
  • All my reviews still show up at the top of the list. Some from more than 2 years ago; however, if you give 1 or 2 stars then remove the app, your review just goes in line with all the others weather by date or helpfulness. Do you really keep an app that you think is only 1 or 2 star worthy? Posted via the Android Central App
  • Sometimes, depends on how much I used to like it before it turned to crap. If it was always crap, then no.
  • Well, that would be blatantly obvious, given some of the vitriolic comments about some apps. If there was a way to delete them, I'm sure they would... But useful to know the info they get, so if I report a bug, I don't have to put all that stuff in... Thanks for that!
  • From a developer point of view, does anyone know which Build parameter will give you the device "codename" ("shamu" in the example given)?
  • The new reviews layout in the Play Store do hide unfavorable/low star reviews. I've seen it on a lot of applications Store pages. You filter the reviews by Newest and latest version, and wow you have a list between zero and 10 reviews; some dated back over a year when that version wasn't even released. The Play Store review system is completely broken.
  • I just went thru "My Apps" in Google play. I see reviews from two weeks ago, going all the way back to 2010. Some remarks, some only ratings. Some good, some pretty low. Some changed, some not. I review them, and unless they get way better or way worse, I never go back to see what I said. Am I missing something? Should I become more anal, or just more overwhelmed with a sense of my own importance? Someone help! Unlocked Marshmallow Nexus 6 on Verizon. I'm a happy guy.
  • Well regardless of what is SUPPOSED to happen or how it supposed to work, there is at the very least something amiss in the system if so many people feel that their reviews disappear. There was a series of font packs that I left negative reviews for in the past that refused to show up for more than a day. When I would revisit the app, it would indicate that there was no review for that app from me. These font pack apps had requested extraneous permissions and that is what the feedback I was leaving indicated. I can look at the same apps today and there is still no review from me. My hunch was that the app was doing it from the phone side instead of the developer removing it. now that I don't have the apps installed any longer, I'll have to test this.
  • To go along with what many have said here, SOMEONE, whether it's the app developer or Google themselves, is deleting comments as they see necessary. I've had it happen to me on many occasions. No derogatory review either, just not a five star review. I'm not gonna name the app's name but I've had my comment disappear numerous times from Google Play. I gave this particular app an honest 2 star rating and it published only to be deleted less than 5 minutes later. Rated it again 2 stars and 5 minutes later, again deleted. Did it a third time and again, deleted. So now after 3 times, I rate the app 5 stars and give it a glowing review and what do you know, it stayed for a week until I physically deleted it. You know what, I am gonna name the app for the sake of this article: Quickpic. And to note, this was a rating for Quickpic AFTER the very shady Cheetah Mobile took over the app. We all know about CM so I'll leave it at that. So anyway, someone is deleting reviews and if it's not the developer, then it is Google and their do as I say, not as I do liberal ********* business practices. Maybe some of these bigger developers (example, but not limited to: CM) is sliding the Google people a little extra for them to monitor and delete comments that don't fit a particular developers criteria.
  • I was wondering what happened to my bad review regarding this android central app I was having problems with this app I emailed the ppl of this app directly and never got a response back so I went to Google store and wrote a not so kind review I came back 2 days later my review was deleted.... I'm wondering how is it possible for developers to delete reviews that aren't so kind to them? Smh. Posted via the Android Central App
  • Sooo, if it's not devs deleting ratings, who?? Have posted more than 25 reviews in last 6mo, only 3 stuck. I comment, (no rants or foul language, try to be constructive), rate, (w\stars), & click on comment(?) button & everything looks good. Returning, or going to G+ to review, there is nothing there. Have asked for help thru forums, but after 5-6mo, nary a reply. Any anwsers here?? RickH~~Ad Astra per Astra~~
  • Something seems to be wonky with Google Play's rating system. Or maybe some apps have found a way around the system? I won't name names, though this app has been mentioned in the comments a couple of times, but one verrrrrry popular app seems to have mastered the art of cleaning out reviews as quickly as a cheetah can run. I had originally given this app 5 stars just to get them to stop *asking* me to rate their app (not that it stopped it). Bad bad idea, I know. This was well over a year ago, and I left no comment. The app went downhill over time. Tne day all of my Gallery photos were deleted without a trace, apparently included in their "junk files", though not listed, I changed my review to one star, along with very thorough details. I did this nearly every day, because my review would magically revert to 5 stars "for an older version". This probably happened 6-7 times before I decided it wasn't worth the stress. I had a backup, and had uninstalled the app immediately, but I still feel my blood pressure rise when I think about it. As it stands, I have a 5 star rating for this app. Gah.