Apple sued over in-app microtransactions

Parent group argues it's too easy for kids to rack up huge bills.

A group of parents have launched legal action against Apple in the US over how it deals with in-app microtransactions.

As reported by the BBC, the parents, led by attorney Garen Meguerian, argue that it is too easy for children to rack up huge bills without an adult's consent.

A judge has rejected Apple's call for the suit to be dismissed on grounds that it has recently added a feature to iOS allowing parents to disable in-app purchases, and stated the case can now go to court.

Meguerian's original filing listed Capcom social game Smurf's Village as a prime example, the free-to-play title offers add-ons for as much as 69.99.

Although players can advance through the game without spending money, Meguerian argued that it's designed "strategically to induce purchases" by making progress snail-slow without add-ons.

The BBC offered UK parent Niamh Bolton's story as an example of how things can go awry if a youngster gets hold of your iTunes password. She claims her 10-year-old daughter managed to spend 1500 in 'free' kids app Tap Pet Hotel in just two hours.

Apple has so far declined to comment on the suit.

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