May 8, 2013

Children racking up millions in smartphone app charges

Young people are running up huge bills that their parents are left to pay due to unexpected charges on smartphone and tablet apps.

Windows Phone UK commissioned research which found that 28 per cent of parents have been the victim of unexpected costs from their children buying apps or spending extra money within the app.

It appears that eight-year-olds are the biggest trouble, running up bills of an average of £59.59. But even younger people have been found to have run up extra costs, with more than a third of children aged four and under making purchases without permission.

Brett Siddons, from Windows Phone UK, commented: “Our research reveals parents are worried about the impact of app and in-app purchases on their bills and we understand the stress this can cause.

"With technology becoming more and more intuitive, it's important that parents can trust in the technology they use and feel as safe as possible when handing over their smartphone and tablet devices to their children."

An Office of Fair Trading investigation was launched last month into app-based games amid concerns that children in particular are being tricked into spending money on 'free' apps.

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Filed Under: Mobile Software News

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