Apple has been put on a naughty step due to its failure for tacking the costly purchases of in-app. Top marks have been given to Google by EU for putting the suggestions forward.
Owing to the complaints, both the companies were invited by EC for chatting about the way the users are misled by apps and games. Parental controls are bypassed by the kids and hefty bills are racked up by buying these.
EC asked both Apple as well as Google to the following
- People shouldn’t be misled by saying that free-games are offered, which actually need in-app purchases.
- Children shouldn’t be encouraged for making these in-game purchases.
- Punters should be given adequate information about the terms of payment.
- Email addresses should be provided for queries and complaints.
EC said that both the companies were asked for providing solutions to the problem and today EC said that numerous changes have already been incorporated by Google as told. This meant that the word ‘Free’ is not used, wherein purchases are required and targeted guidelines are developed for the application developers for prevention of direct exhortation to the children. There has also been an adaption of default settings for making sure that authorization is needed before making the purchase. Thus, the monthly credit card option doesn’t work here. However, EC claimed that Apple has taken the decision of not acting at all. No immediate and concrete solutions are made by Apple for addressing the concerns, especially with regards to authorization of payment.
EC declared that Apple hasn’t provided any timings or commitments for implementing the changes. It also added that now, legal actions may be taken for getting the necessary changes implemented. A spokesperson from Apple said that there were no problems as such and further claimed that Apple is renowned for providing parental controls that ensure safety as well as a good experience for children and parents on App store. The parental controls are customizable, intuitive and strong. Also, last year it was made sure that there is clear marking of in-app purchases. A kids section has also been created on the App store so that there is stronger protection.
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