WASHINGTON — Apple agreed to refund customers at least $32.5 million to settle a longstanding complaint that the company billed American customers for charging parents. Parents said that their kids used their devices to buy apps and other things without their consent.
Reuters reported that kids used their parents’ phones and mobile apps to make unauthorized purchases.
Under the settlement, Apple will have to change its billing practices to make sure it obtains consent from parents before charging for spending via apps. FTC chairwoman Edith Ramirez said the following:
“Whether you’re doing business in the mobile arena or the mall down the street, fundamental consumer protections apply… You cannot charge consumers for purchases they did not authorize.”
One mother told the FTC that her daughter spent $2,600 while playing the game “Tap Pet Hotel.” Other apps, such as Dragon Story and Tiny Zoo Friends, have similar complaints.