Smurfberries, zombie toxin, city cash, and gems just got real expensive for Apple. A nine-digit settlement proposal is now on the table, as Apple agrees to foot the bill for kids who racked up in-app purchases on their parents' iTunes accounts. That's right; Cupertino will be taking responsibility for parents who refuse to take responsibility for the actions of their own kids. What the Smurf, right?
We've covered Capcom's dealings in the free-to-play social game arena pretty closely over the past few months. The respected gaming company has come under a lot of scruntiny in the press over their policy on digital purchases. Most notably were the $100 "smurfberries" in their popular social game Smurf's Village. Advocacy groups targeted Smurf's Village after a story came out about a child inadvertently spending thousands of dollars on virtual goods.
In the wake of hefty bills for all things Smurf, the FTC has taken it upon itself to review the practice of "in-app purchases" for various apps on iPhones, iPads and iPods. The concern is that customers do not fully comprehend the fact that they're actually charging their bank account.
Earlier today, a story appeared on PocketGamer.biz alleging that Apple had scolded Capcom over last week's $1400 smurfberry scandal. The report was based on comments from an anonymous source who said that Apple was upset by the recent flurry of return requests due to children accidentally buying expensive virtual items in the online Capcom game Smurfs' Village, and "had strong words" with Capcom over the issue. The report also said this controversy had prompted Apple to reconsider their iTunes log-in policies. However, when we spoke to representatives at Capcom, they said Apple never talked to them at all about this situation.