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Five-year-old spends $2,500 on in-app purchases


The next time you let your child play with your iPad or iPhone, you might want to pay attention to what he or she is up to. The BBC ran a story today about 5-year-old Danny Kitchen of Bristol, England, who ran up a £1,700 (about US$2,500) bill in iTunes after his dad entered his passcode to allow Danny download a free iPad game from the App Store.

While Danny only spent about 15 minutes playing with the game, that was long enough for him to repeatedly tap an in-app purchase button and rack up a string of £69.99 (about $105) charges. Mum and Dad received emails from the iTunes App Store the next day itemizing the purchases, but they figured that the charges were an error and ignored them.

Danny's parents found out that the charges were real when they received a call from their credit card company asking about the transactions. Apple was reportedly helpful in providing the Kitchens with a full refund, and Danny has learned "not to do it again."

Ars Technica's Jacqui Cheng offered a quick solution for parents who don't want their little darlings to spend their college tuition on in-app purchases: turn off in-app purchases in Settings > General > Restrictions before handing over the iOS device.

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