Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) Refunds $32MM to Parents of Zealous Gamers, Again

5AAPL_chart.pngIt’s no secret that games drive the major revenue streams in the mobile world. With about three quarters of all revenues generated on the Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) app store coming from in-app purchases (IAP), it’s also clear where the big gaming money is. The same IAPs are also the reason why Apple will be refunding a total of $32.5 million to the parents of overly devoted gamers.

The company and the Federal Trade Commission entered into a consent decree under which AAPL will rebill the aforementioned sum to a number of customers whose children blew hundreds of dollars on ingame purchases.

Even though the parents should have probably simply disabled IAPs entirely on their kids’ iOS devices, the decree stipulates that Apple should inform customers that they are eligible for a refund. The children reportedly used the 15-minute time window following password entry on the device to go on spending sprees reaching as high as $2.6 thousand for a single game.

AAPL_image.pngIt seems we’ve come full circle as Apple effected a similar refund after a protracted lawsuit ending in a settlement, the apple of discord being IAPs once again, only back then children were not yet dishing out money on Clash of Clans gem chests.

For a mastodon like AAPL the refund money is a trifle but it serves to highlight the draw of freemium games and the somewhat scary power they can hold over our gaming habits. The iOS top-grossing chart for the second week of the new year is still dominated by the usual suspects according to Distimo analytics – Candy Crush Saga is back in first, followed by Clash of Clans. The estimations provided by ThinkGaming now peg Candy Crush’s daily revenue just $50 thousand shy of $1 million – money generated by those very same in-app purchases, with a 30% cut going into AAPL‘s coffers.

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