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iOS 7.1.1 Now Labels Apps with 'In-App Purchases' in Top Charts and Featured Sections

As part of iOS 7.1.1, released earlier today, Apple has implemented some minor changes to the iOS App Store to make it more clear which apps offer in-app purchases.

Apple has provided an "Offers In-App Purchases" disclosure on individual app detail pages since March of 2013, but now the App Store has been updated to include a small "In-App Purchases" notification for apps in Top Charts listings and on specific featured apps listings, such as in the "Great Free Games" category.

Old Top Charts view on left, new Top Charts view with in-app purchase disclosure on right

This expanded in-app purchase view allows users to determine which apps on the Top Free, Paid, and Grossing charts offer in-app purchases. The disclosure is also available on top category listings as well.

Apple's new in-app purchase warnings come following a January settlement with the FTC that saw Apple providing $32 million in refunds to parents whose children purchased unauthorized in-app items. Apple was also required to obtain express consent from consumers before billing them for an in-app purchase, a measure that it initially implemented with iOS 7.1.

In-app purchases have long been an issue for Apple, first landing the company in hot water with the FTC in 2011 after multiple parental complaints over children over-spending within apps. Apple has made many updates to its in-app purchase policies since that time, including requiring a separate passcode entry for initiating an in-app purchase and providing multiple notifications before a purchase is made.

Along with changes to the App Store, iOS 7.1.1 also includes improvements to Touch ID, Safari support for top-level domains such as .photo, and a few bug fixes. It can be downloaded over-the-air via the Software Update tool in the Settings menu.

Update 3:40 PM PT: Apple has notified developers that it is also adding new app content descriptions to the App Store.
You can now use the following descriptions: Medical/Treatment Information, Gambling and Contests, and Unrestricted Web Access (for apps that permit navigating and viewing web pages, for example with an embedded browser).
There are also new territory specific restrictions based on rating.

Top Rated Comments

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63 months ago
There should be a "hide applications with IAPs" option in Parental Controls.
Rating: 18 Votes
63 months ago
Most free apps suddenly feel less appealing.
Rating: 15 Votes
63 months ago
Doesn't Candy Crush Saga also have IAPs to skip the timer?
Rating: 13 Votes
63 months ago
I will mentally read this as 'Avoid' for any free Apps now. What a splendiferous feature. Well done Apple!
Rating: 13 Votes
63 months ago
good! IAP have seriously become an epidemic in the app market. It's very greedy and makes it difficult for honest developers to succeed.
Rating: 7 Votes
63 months ago
At this point, it's probably cleaner to mark apps with no in-app purchases as "No In-App Purchases".
Rating: 6 Votes
63 months ago

I stopped even looking for apps all together. In-App Purchases ruined the app store. The FREE category should be relabelled DEMO.

It really does ruin the experience of app purchasing when it is littered with in-app greed.
Rating: 5 Votes
63 months ago

Most free apps suddenly feel less appealing.

I always prefer to buy apps then put up with freemium BS. I'd rather pay a couple bucks for software that I use everyday and encourage developers to make software that innovates rather than innovative payment methods.
Rating: 4 Votes
63 months ago
It's a good first step, but I think all apps with IAP should be given its own category and only truly free apps with absolutely no IAP would continue to be placed in the 'free' category.

Possible titles for this new IAP category:

"Not really free"

"Not happy with 99 cents or even 5 bucks"

"Watch your kids"

"How do you like our timers"

"Free with a big catch"

"Wait or be gouged"

"I can't believe I just spent money on that"

or maybe just 'demos' would suffice.
Rating: 4 Votes
63 months ago
Is that IAP stuff really so surprising? For many many years, users have been making it 100% clear that they are definitely NOT willing to pay money to buy software by pirating it. IAP and software subscription license models (such as what Adobe is doing) are the software industry's answer to that. If people jailbreak their devices to get apps for free, then IAP and DLC is the obvious answer, as it is significantly more difficult to pirate.

So don't blame the developers for trying to make money with this kind of schemes. Blame the freeloader parasites who have forced them into this corner.
Rating: 3 Votes

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