Last Updated Aug 12, 2008 10:17 PM EDT Apple has confirmed that it can turn off an application already sitting on a user's iPhone. There's been a fair amount of controversy around kill switches, and I suddenly wondered whether, given the specifics of Apple's operations, whether the company was opening itself up to liability. So I asked Mark McCreary, a partner with law firm Fox Rothschild, about it. BNET: Because Apple vets applications before letting them onto its iPhone store, is there a potential for liability? Does it effectively put Apple in the position of having authorized the application and the user having made decisions based on that assurance? Mark McCreary: Generally speaking, I am not aware of any prohibition on Apple killing an application that a user has installed on his or her iPhone. First, the action is permitted in the Apple terms and conditions for the iPhone and App Store. Second, there are very compelling reasons for Apple to suddenly take away an application. … [Read more...] about Does Apple’s iPhone App Killing Open It to Liability?
Apple app refund
WASHINGTON - Apple (AAPL) will refund consumers at least $32.5 million to settle a longstanding complaint that the technology company billed U.S. consumers for charges incurred by children buying mobile apps without their parents' consent. Under the terms of the settlement, announced on Wednesday by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission, Apple also will be required to change its billing practices to ensure it obtains consent from consumers before charging for items sold in mobile apps. "Whether you're doing business in the mobile arena or the mall down the street, fundamental consumer protections apply," said FTC Chairwoman Edith Ramirez. "You cannot charge consumers for purchases they did not authorize." In an internal memo to employees, Apple CEO Tim Cook said the company decided to settle rather than risk a long and distracting legal battle because the FTC's proposals aligned with the company's own intended changes. Ramirez said the commission had logged "tens of thousands of … [Read more...] about Apple to refund consumers over kids’ app charges
game for the iPhone and other Apple gadgets, was released a month ago and quickly became the highest-grossing application in the iTunes store. Yet it's free to download.So where does the money come from? Kelly Rummelhart of California has part of the answer. Her 4-year-old son was using her iPad to play the game and racked up $66.88 in charges on her credit card without knowing what he was doing.Rummelhart had no idea that it was possible to buy things - buy them with real money - inside the game. In this case, her son bought one bushel and 11 buckets of "Smurfberries," tokens that speed up gameplay."Really, my biggest concern was them scratching the screen. Never in my wildest dreams did I think they would be charging things on it," the 36-year-old mother said.She counts herself lucky that her son didn't start tapping on another purchase button, like the "wheelbarrow" of Smurfberries for $59.99.Rummelhart joins a number of parents who have been horrified by purchases of Smurfberries … [Read more...] about CBS News Logo Apple App Store: Catnip for Free-Spending Kids?
When YouTube's Red subscription streaming service launches Oct. 28, you'll be able to pay $9.99 for a month's worth of videos uninterrupted by advertisements. Unless you're on a iPhone, in which case, you'll have to pony up $12.99. As Ars Technica astutely pointed out, Apple takes a 30 percent cut of revenues for subscriptions sold via in-app purchases. And Google, which owns YouTube, will pass that extra cost onto subscribers. Buying the subscription on the YouTube website should bypass the surcharge. Google says that "membership extends across devices and anywhere you sign into YouTube," so if you sign up on YouTube.com, you should be able enjoy Red when you're logged into the app on your iPhone or iPad. (Relatedly, if you do sign up through the YouTube iOS app and you decide to cancel your subscription, you'll have to go through Apple to get a refund.) YouTube announced Red on Wednesday. The paid service eliminates ads on videos, offers unlimited music streaming and gives access to … [Read more...] about CBS News Logo New YouTube subscription will cost more to buy on Apple devices
A California district judge has preliminarily approved a settlement that will allow parents to receive a refund of at least $5 if their children made in-app purchases on "free" computer games without parental consent, the web site Top Class Actions reported. A Federal Trade Commission investigation found that game developers were advertising free games on iTunes, but then charging kids to buy "gaming currency," such as virtual supplies or currency. With a single click and without any password requirement, children could charge $100 or more to accountholders' credit cards or PayPal accounts, Top Class Action said. Details on filing a claim haven't been announced yet but interested consumers can check back to Whistleblower for information when it becomes available. The filing deadline is July 31. Older Post Surly Pugsley bicycle forks recalled Newer Post Victims of "government grant" scheme to be reimbursed … [Read more...] about Apple to give refunds for “free” games targeted to kids