An 11-year-old United Kingdom boy racked up a whopping £6,000 ($7,465.80) buying games from his parents' iTunes account.
Roy Dobson surely regrets the day he accidentally left his iTunes account signed in on his iPad because that simple mistake cost his family a fortune.
Dobson’s son, Alfie, made more than 50 in-app purchases from the account linked to his father’s credit card. Additionally, he spent nearly £2,000 ($2,488.60) in less than an hour on just one game, Metro reports.
“These games were initially released for £8.99 ($11.19) or £9.99 ($12.43) but the game companies found they were able to make more money from them by offering in-app purchases,” said games expert and technology journalist Guy Cocker. “So the idea is that you download the initial game for free and then you pay for items or extras as you play.”
"They are called micro-transactions as they usually cost a matter of pence,” he added. “But it’s completely feasible that someone could spend a lot of money unlocking items.”
The boy’s mother, Jill, said her son’s iPad play is restricted to just weekends, and although he has purchased things in the past, he’s always asked permission until now.
“He saw this at £99 ($123.19) and was just curious as to what you would get for £99,” said Jill, offering an explanation for her son’s mischievous behavior.
“It was just to get better in the game, there’s nothing to show for it, I didn’t even know you could buy things for £99,” she added. “It’s scary. He said the game was that good he couldn’t stop, but he only thought he pressed it a few times.”
The family is now using their experience as a cautionary tale, warning other parents how easy it is for children to run up expensive tabs on electronic devices without even realizing it.
On the bright side, Apple has reportedly agreed to give the family their money back. However, they highly encourage parents to set up parental controls and “Ask to Buy” settings to prevent these mishaps from occurring.
Banner/Thumbnail Photo Credit: Flickr, Marcus Kwan