Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is hoping to gain court approval for a settlement that resolves reports of the company's influence on children making in-app purchases on the iPhone or iPad.
The problem regarding in-app purchases is that it's easy for children to purchase virtual supplies with virtual currency on some of the games played on mobile devices. Kids often purchase the virtual products online without their parent's permission.
Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)'s lawyers are scheduled to make an appearance on Friday in a San Jose court in hopes they can receive the approval of the agreement. This particular agreement would force Apple to send a notice of their terms to over 23 million iTunes accounts and provide users with instructions for parental controls which could be used to disable the purchases.
This agreement would give the class members a choice of compensation: a $5.00 iTunes store credit or a cash refund which would total the amount of their child's purchases within a 45-day time frame. Class members who were charged $30 or more would have the option to choose a cash refund instead.
The real problem with the games mentioned in the lawsuit is the "highly-addictive" design. People complain these games are inspiring kids to purchase larger quantities of virtual currency, which usually requires a large amount of real money. The settlement was agreed on after a lot of negotiations with mediators. Apple will also cough up $1.3 million in lawyer fees.
Neither party has made an official comment regarding the lawsuit.
This lawsuit against Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), which initially started in 2011, may force the company to create tighter security regarding in-app purchases and game downloads. It may also prompt other app stores like Google Play to create more security for paid apps and games. Hopefully, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)'s new notice will give parents a head up of in-app purchase issues before trouble brews up again.