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  • Apple Settles In-App Purchase Lawsuit with Feds


    Case closed.

    On Wednesday, news broke that Apple has agreed to settle with the Federal Trade Commission regarding the lingering matter that involves a former loophole that used to allow children to make in-app purchases without the assistance or permission of parents or guardians.

    Effective immediately, the FTC is dropping its lawsuit against Apple as the iDevice maker is paying a $32.5 million penalty of sorts in the form of refunds to consumers who were financially put out by these in-app purchase mishaps.

    "It doesn't feel right for the FTC to sue over a case that had already been settled," Apple CEO Tim Cook explained to Apple employees in a new communication shared Wednesday. "To us, it smacked of double jeopardy. However, the consent decree the FTC proposed does not require us to do anything we weren't already going to do, so we decided to accept it rather than take on a long and distracting legal fight."

    Candidly, Cook said today that Apple received 37,000 claims and has already initiated the process of providing reimbursements.

    Source: CNBC
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Apple Settles In-App Purchase Lawsuit with Feds started by Michael Essany View original post
    Comments 12 Comments
    1. ThatOneProfile's Avatar
      ThatOneProfile -
      Tax write-off for apple.
    1. politicalslug's Avatar
      politicalslug -
      Not good enough! There needs to be a lifetime maximum per app so people can't spend thousands of dollars buying gold coins and such for my little pony games. There is no oversight whatsoever. Games that cost thousands to develop need to be priced accordingly. After all, if people can't make the right choice, surely the government can step in and make it for them.
    1. jigar7's Avatar
      jigar7 -
      @politicalslug: Bang on! But as you know... many governments will sleep with anyone who pays them handsomely! Thats the unfortunate truth and that isn't going to change for a long long time!

      In App purchases are like a bloody scam! Eg. If you try buying in app purchases for PvZ 2 to unlock all levels and plants... It will cost you around 60-80$... plus the additional power ups which has no limit!

      I think Apple should introduce User Profiles (especially on their tablets). That way you can lock out purchases. Of course they have the option inside settings to block applications... but wouldn't it be nice to just switch profiles on lockscreen rather than modifying the settings everytime?! Android introduced it in 4.2 with Nexus 7 2013.... Now that Apple has copied a lot of their interface ideas and a flat design with a Control center too... why not copy this as well. At least many parents would benefit with user profiles.
    1. Feanor64's Avatar
      Feanor64 -
      It's not apples fault people don't pay attention to what their kids are doing.
    1. Carvensno's Avatar
      Carvensno -
      Quote Originally Posted by Feanor64 View Post
      It's not apples fault people don't pay attention to what their kids are doing.
      Thank you!!! +1

      We don't need the government stepping in to regulate this crap. How about being a responsible parent and watching your kid. Better yet? How about giving your kid/s more constructive toys that exercises their brains.

      Getting tired of seeing people blaming companies for their parental mistakes and they don't take the responsibility for their actions or lack of actions(watching their kids).
    1. Rcworship's Avatar
      Rcworship -
      Quote Originally Posted by Feanor64 View Post
      It's not apples fault people don't pay attention to what their kids are doing.
      Thank you!!! Finally, some accountability! Let me also cry on your shoulder about how I spilled my hot coffee in my lap and burnt myself! Waaaaaahhhhh!!! I should become a millionaire now because it was the big bad corporation's fault that I don't watch what I'm doing!

      Seriously, take care of your own affairs, people! Manage your life and you'll be okay. However, I do agree with profiles being an option, particularly with the tablets. That is one thing Microsoft has over Apple, and yet, here I am with my Apple products😁
    1. Christophxr's Avatar
      Christophxr -
      What the hell am I seeing here? The Internet used to be full of people saying, "WE DON'T NEED NO STINKIN' FDA! EVERYONE SHOULD JUST BUY THEIR OWN CHEMISTRY LAB SO THEY CAN TEST ALL THE FOOD THEY EAT TO FIND OUT WHETHER OR NOT THEY PUT LEAD IN IT ON THEIR OWN! WE DON'T NEED NO STINKIN' GUBMENT FOR THAT!"

      Now it has people who actually WANT the government to have a positive role in their lives? This is insane.

      I can see both sides to this argument. On one, in-app purchases ARE a scam. There really is no doubting that. And as technology evolves (we didn't have "in-app purchases" just a few years ago) so must our laws. But on the other hand, yeah, watch your damn' kids.

      But think about this too. Say you're an old grandpa who doesn't know **** about technology. Your granddaughter knows the iTunes password because you trust her with the App Store and she's proven that she can be trusted with it too.

      Then in-app purchases come in. She downloads a game, finds herself effectively "addicted" to it, can't beat this level without this little purchase, and it just snowballs from there. A 12 year old pretty much just got scammed.

      So yes, if nothing else, developers, Apple or whoever need to make it clear to people both what in-app purchases are and whether or not each app provides them, or perhaps use "Profiles" the way Microsoft does. Perhaps they can add the option to disable ALL in-app purchases. Either way, SOMETHING needs to be done; not everyone is a bright, young late teenager who grew up with technology like you did. Many people grew up too poor or too early for that.
    1. PCYoda's Avatar
      PCYoda -
      Quote Originally Posted by politicalslug View Post
      Not good enough! There needs to be a lifetime maximum per app so people can't spend thousands of dollars buying gold coins and such for my little pony games. There is no oversight whatsoever. Games that cost thousands to develop need to be priced accordingly. After all, if people can't make the right choice, surely the government can step in and make it for them.
      Apple already has an "allowance" system - the parent sets up their Apple ID, and then can setup another Apple ID that has no linked credit card and gets fed an allowance each month from the primary Apple ID. Set the device up to use the "allowed" Apple ID as the primary ID. This way, you cap the total amount of music, games, and in-app purchases are made. (If you needed to go over the allowance, you could always add in an iTunes gift card or add in a credit card temporarily later on.)

      If you're talking about for yourself rather than kids... well, if you honestly think that spending real money on fleeting in-game currencies and power ups is smart, you've got other issues. I personally delete games if I find I get to a point where I can't progress without spending real money, unless I absolutely love the game and think the price is right for what I'm adding, and there's some permanence of benefit to what I'm adding. (i.e. if it'll cost $5 to add 100 more levels to a game I've already enjoyed 100 levels on for free, I might consider it; if it'll cost $5 to add 5 more levels, I'm probably deleting it. If you're asking me to spend even $1 on "powerups" that "might help" me progress but don't guarantee it, I'm probably deleting.)
    1. dsg's Avatar
      dsg -
      In app purchases are a rip off and most are found in games targeted towards kids, so I don't agree that its just the parents fault.


      It's cleverly designed to get your money out of your pocket, albeit in an unethical way

      Edit: turn off In-App Purchases(which should be off by default)

      Setting.app - General - Restrictions - In-App Purchases toggle to the off position
    1. bigboyz's Avatar
      bigboyz -
      Thats just crazy. Only reason FEDS are involved is because they'll get a cut.
    1. *T*'s Avatar
      *T* -
      The readers of this forum are a mixture of conspiracy theorists, realists, liberals and complainers.
    1. Rcworship's Avatar
      Rcworship -
      Quote Originally Posted by *T* View Post
      The readers of this forum are a mixture of conspiracy theorists, realists, liberals and complainers.
      Hey! That hurts my self esteem!