Kid spent over ₹11 lakh in an iPad game; This was mother and Apple’s reaction
The six-year-old George purchased in-app features for the iPad version of Sega’s Sonic Forces.
According to a new report by the New York Post, one on the Apple users named Jessica Johnson of Wilton, CT ended paying over $16,000 or ₹11 lakh unknowingly to Apple. Why unknowingly? That's because this payment was not done by her but her six-year-old kid, George.
As per the report, the six-year-old George purchased in-app features for the iPad version of Sega's Sonic Forces. Johnson just recently discovered a series of withdrawals made by a credit card over the months, which total to around, $16,293.10. These withdrawals are said to take place over the months starting from July, when the when her six-year-old kid started playing and buying add-ons in the game.
Also mentioned is that the withdrawals ranged from $1.99 to $99.99 for bundles. On July 9, some 25 withdrawals were made from her account, all of which valued to over $2,500 or ₹1.8 lakh.
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Although Johnson, initially thought that these transactions are nothing but fraud or a mistake, after filing a fraud claim with Chase, she was informed that these were indeed genuine. She was then asked to contact Apple for this.
After contacting Apple, she was given a list of all the charges, which is when she realized that it was her son. "It's like my 6-year-old was doing lines of cocaine - and doing bigger and bigger hits," Johnson said.
Needless to say, Apple refused to refund her the amount as she didn't claim it within 60 days of the charge. Johnson also admits that she did not take precaution to completely lock down the account. But she also says that she did not know about all the features.
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The mother even accused the game of being “completely predatory” in encouraging young users to spend more. “What grownup would spend $100 on a chest of virtual gold coins?” she asked.
Nonetheless, Apple has been offering a number of Parent Control options since years to manage the iPhone and iPad given to the child. Some of the Parental Control options also include limiting purchases and accessing the apps. Similar controls are also there on macOS.
So, the next time you hand over your iPhone or iPad to your kid, you know what to do.
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