Google is going to shell out $19 million to their Android customers whose children’s were made to pay for some apps by some tricks. FTC is investigating such cases for some years. Besides Google, FTC has also investigated Apple and Amazon in the past. However earlier this year, Apple has agreed for a settlement.
Amazon on the other hand has appealed against the Federal Trade Commission charges.
Google is also going to remove such apps which are still available in the App store which are possibly deceptive.
Most of the payments made by the children of the customers were for unlocking the levels of the games they are playing, for gaining more lives or powers.
FTC argues that this is an unfair practice done by Google which tricks the children to spend their parent’s money without their authorization.
The Chairwoman of FTC, Edith Ramirez said, ”for millions of American families, smartphones and tablets have become a part of their daily lives. As more Americans embrace mobile technology, it’s vital to remind companies that time-tested consumer protections still apply, including that consumers should not be charged for purchases they did not authorize.”
Google argued that they have made attempts to make sure that such unwanted charges won’t happen by asking extra security passwords while the customers try to make any purchase. However FTC made it clear that the measures taken by Google to ensure that such unwanted charges won’t happen were not enough and hence Google has settled.
According to the settlement, Google has to pay their customers who were unfairly charged within 15 days of the orders issued. After a year, if FTC finds out that Google has spent less than $19 million to refund their customers then the remaining amount should be paid to FTC.
Before the settlement, rumors were Google was expected to be slapped with a rather hefty fine specially after Apple settled earlier this year for $32.5 million on similar charges.