Has your child bankrupted you in Smurfberries? Had a child who maxed out your credit card on in-app purchases? Good news. Apple is now writing to some iTunes account holders, telling them they may be liable for a refund.
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Are you a parent who nearly lost his or her mind and committed an act of infanticide when you discovered that your happy little sprog, in the space of five minutes playing unsupervised with your iPhone, somehow amassed an iTunes bill of over $1,000 in frickin’ Smurfberries? Well, Apple’s ready to help you, but even if you were only burnt for less than $30 because of the way in-app purchases used to work, Apple is ready to fork over a $5 iTunes gift card as a way o make amends… and settle a class-action lawsuit.
Asian messaging service Line, which has been a big success on iOS, turned over $58 million in revenue during the first quarter of 2013 with its new monetization model. But it’s just been dealt a massive blow by Apple.
The Cupertino company has unexplainably forced Line to remove its gift sharing feature, which allowed users to send stickers priced around $1.99 to their friends.
The game in this video is called Super Monster Bros By Adventure Time Pocket Free Games. Yep, that’s the entire title. Bodes well, doesn’t it? I bet you’re itching to play it. Sadly, though, you can’t. Apple’s already yanked it from the App Store. You probably didn’t want to play it anyway, though: it has to be the most shamelessly abusive examples of in-app purchases that mortal mind can comprehend.
Apple has made a small change to the way in which App Store age ratings are displayed to make them a little easier to find. They’re now displayed alongside app icons on iOS devices — just under the name of the developer — so they’re not so easy to miss when you’re downloading new apps.
Do you hate in-app purchases? Sick of downloading an app only to discover its borderline unusable until you drop an extra five bucks? Sick of games that aren’t play to win, but pay to win?
Tough noogies. In-app purchases account for a staggering 76% of all iPhone App Store revenue, with 71% of all iPhone app revenue coming from in-app purchases for total free apps.
If there’s any comfort to be had from U.S. IAP haters, at least there’s this: Americans spend, on average, only about a buck in in-app purchases per download. In Japan, it’s four times that amount.
- Source Distimo
Apple has quietly added a new labeling system to the App Store that shows which apps have in-app purchases. You can only see whether an app or game has in-app purchases on the desktop version of iTunes, but the feature will presumably be rolled out to the App Store on iOS devices soon.
Coincidentally, Apple recently settled a lawsuit with some parents over in-app purchases. Kids were spending thousands of dollars making in-app purchases in freemium games.
Kids love the iPad; download a few children’s games and it’ll keep them entertained for hours. But don’t leave them unsupervised too long, because it could cost you. Sharon and Greg Kitchen from Bristol, England, found that out the hard way when their five-year-old son Danny spent $2,550 on in-app purchases in just 10 minutes.
Apple has finally settled a 2011 lawsuit with parents whose kids spent insane amounts of money on in-app purchases. A group of parents originally sued Apple after their kids raked up enormous iTunes bills on apps that were downloaded for free from the App Store.
One of the cool unsung new features of iOS 6 is the way it doesn’t ask you for a password every single time you go to make an app purchase. Remember those days? Ugh.
The downside of this convenience is that anyone who uses your iOS device within about 15 minutes of you having entered the password–like to buy that free game app for your kid, you know, the one with the in-app purchases–they will be able to purchase other apps or (gasp!) complete in-app purchases without entering the password. No, Apple, I really don’t want $100 worth of Smurf Berries.
Short of turning off in-app purchases–which, really, you should if you have children using your iOS device often–there’s another way to protect yourself from this kind of snafu.