in-app purchases

Apple's in-app purchase settlement faces approval

SAN JOSE, Calif. -- The settlement that will give some iTunes customers a refund for in-app purchases made by minors marched one step closer to approval today.

The two sides met in a federal courthouse here to hash out some final details before it's passed along to a judge for approval early next week.

As part of the proposed settlement, Apple will be required to pay out $5 in iTunes credit to those who say purchases were made on their device by a minor, and without them being aware of it. The company plans to send notices to more … Read more

Apple settles lawsuit over in-app purchases by kids

Apple has settled a lawsuit over the unauthorized use of in-app purchase in games and apps sold through the App Store.

As part of a preliminary deal that has yet to be finalized by a U.S. district court judge, Apple will pay those eligible class members a $5 iTunes gift card. Users that spent more than $30 can choose to get a cash refund, as long as they meet a handful of requirements, including filling out a form that details what apps the charges originated from.

The 2011 suit stemmed from parents who complained that it was far too … Read more

Amazon launches in-app buying for computer and online games

Those of you who play games from Amazon on your computer or over the Web will now be able to buy virtual items directly in the game.

Unveiled today, the new in-app purchasing service allows developers to set up their games so players can pay for virtual goods and currencies using their Amazon accounts. Previously, only Android and Kindle games in the Android Appstore were able to offer the in-app buying option. Now the feature extends to Amazon games for Windows PCs, Macs, and the Web.

Gamers wil find titles for the PC and Mac at Amazon's Digital Games store. … Read more

Lodsys claims progress in fight over in-app purchase patents

Lodsys, which is locked in patent disputes with app developers over an in-app purchase mechanism, said it has made progress in winning legal and developer favor.

The nonpracticing entity, which went after app makers on Apple's iOS, Google's Android, and other technology platforms for infringing on its patents, said in a blog post this evening that the U.S. Patent Office has confirmed the validity of one of its patent's key claims, effectively hobbling Google's effort to have the patent invalidated:

As a part of the Inter-Parties Reexamination requested by Google, the USPTO recently issued an … Read more

Amazon's got game (and textbook rentals)

Tuesday's top tech stories are out to disrupt your world:

Oh Amazon, what don't you do? Well cross off game development, as it just launched its own studio to make Facebook games and compete with Zynga. It also joined the textbook rental service to face off with eBay's and BookRenter.

YouTube will no longer be a pre-loaded default app on Apple devices. Apple is dropping the YouTube app for iOS 6, and Google will create a separate app you can download. It's all part of Apple's mission to distance itself from Google.

If … Read more

Windows Phone 8: Get your in-app buying here (not in 7.8)

Windows Phone developers who want to add in-app purchases to their products can do so, but only on Windows Phone 8.

Guidelines recently posted by Microsoft confirmed that developers "can only add in-app products to Windows Phone 8 apps." This means that users and developers alike using Windows Phone 7.8 will probably be out of luck.

App makers who want to take advantage of the new feature are advised to explain the "fundamentals" of the in-app product, such as alias, price, type, and languages. They also need to provide Microsoft with a name and image … Read more

App Store hacker says the 'game is over'

The creator of an exploit that let users purchase digital goods inside of iOS apps without actually paying for them said today that Apple's fix puts the hack out of business.

"Currently we have no way to bypass [the] updated APIs," creator Alexei Borodin wrote in a post on his development blog. "It's a good news for everyone, we have updated security in iOS, developers have their air-money."

Borodin says that the exploit, which requires the use of third-party servers and specially-installed security certificates, will continue to be up and running until Apple releases … Read more

In-app purchase hacker sets sights on Mac App Store

The exploit that allowed users to purchase digital goods inside iOS apps without actually paying has jumped platforms and now works on Apple's Mac platform.

The Next Web notes that programmer Alexei Borodin, who created the iOS in-app purchase exploit, now has a similar solution for apps purchased in Apple's Mac App Store. Like the exploit for iOS, this too requires that users install special security certificates on their machines, though it also requires the installation of an extra helper program.

Earlier today Apple said it had a fix coming in the next version of iOS, due out … Read more

Apple fights back at in-app freebie exploit

Apple is not too pleased with Russian hacker Alexey V. Borodin, and a hack he developed that allows iDevice owners to install in-app goods without paying for them.

According to The Next Web, Apple over the weekend blocked the IP addresses of the server Borodin used to facilitate the hack. In addition, the company issued a takedown request to his server's hosting provider. Apple even requested that the video Borodin posted showing his technique in action be removed from YouTube due to a copyright violation.

Borodin last week surfaced with an exploit that re-routes in-app purchase requests away from Apple or a developer's secured serverRead more

Apple 'investigating' in-app purchase freebie exploit

Apple says it's investigating an exploit that currently allows users to purchase digital goods inside of iOS apps without actually paying for them.

"The security of the App Store is incredibly important to us, and the developer community," Apple spokesperson Natalie Harrison told CNET in a prepared statement. "We take reports of fraudulent activity very seriously and we are investigating."

The company did not provide any estimate of when action would be taken. Russian technology blog, which first reported on the exploit earlier today, noted that the hosting company that currently serves the … Read more