Funnest New Feature Of iOS 6?
Your Toddler Can Spend Real Money!

Sometimes I feel like the internet is robbing me blind. I’ve ranted and raved about Opt-Out culture, and last month alone my Paypal account was hit with erroneous charges from both Facebook AND Hootsuite. And just this morning, I got a little surprise receipt from Apple!

“Funny,” I thought, I don’t remember typing in my password to authorize those purchases…”

I did however, download iOS6 to my iPad, which Delilah has affectionately begun referring to as “her iPad” ever since the introduction of Cookie Doodle in to our lives.

Since I didn’t get an iPhone 5, I have been way too bitter to embrace iOS 6 for my phone — (it’s still Siri-less for us lowly iPhone 4 users, WTF Apple?) but I downloaded a bunch of free Pony-themed iPad apps for Delilah the other day and vaguely registered that the password requirement for free apps had been yanked from the iTunes store. Nice. One less barrier between me and an iPad full of “Dress Up Princess Kitchen Sparkle Shoppe”.

But is it possible that unfortunate update was extended to in-app purchases on those free apps as well? Yesterday, the date on the purchases, the only person who handled the iPad at all was Dee while we drove back home from visiting my sister in the bay area. Just this past summer Apple users were reporting an almost opposite glitch, some were able to access in-app content without purchasing it. (What? I really liked Nancy Drew.)

Naturally, I couldn’t actually get anyone from Apple on the phone to just ask them this simple question because my applecare has expired, so I turn to you, Internet. I wasn’t able to replicate it on my own iPad — the apps that were upgraded I already own, and the free ones that weren’t are (thankfully) requesting a password to unlock paid content. Has this happened to you? Have you noticed any weird in-app charges you didn’t authorize, or am I starting the next great internet rumor?

{As an aside, if you’re concerned about your kids, or yourself, being able to download free iTunes content without a password, or access in-app content period, you can go in to your device settings under “restrictions” and customize those settings.}

Feed Me Seymour

  11 comments for “Funnest New Feature Of iOS 6?
Your Toddler Can Spend Real Money!

  1. October 3, 2012 at 7:28 am

    I haven’t noticed this YET, but with my son playing on the iPad it is only a matter of time before he spends a small fortune on some app. I’m not really excited about the lack of controls on the iPad. I would love to see features to password lock folders of apps so my son can’t get into facebook without my permission. Also, I would like to set how often it needs my password. I would rather type it for every single app than have my kid buy digital food for $99 in some game.

  2. iamahoneybee
    October 3, 2012 at 7:35 am

    oh boy. yet another reason I don’t want to install ios6. I don’t have kids to buy stuff while playing around but I could easily see myself browsing around and buying stuff by mistake

  3. October 3, 2012 at 9:55 am

    I got some strange 99 cent charges popping up on my account for apps that my son plays with daily. I assumed he and his dad did some purchasing while I was busy working this weekend. Hopefully that’s the case but now I’m not so sure. This might explain why the Thomas coloring app is suddenly amazing. GRRRR.

    • Morgan
      October 3, 2012 at 12:17 pm

      Yes, beware of suddenly amazing apps! Same goes for My Little Pony!

  4. October 3, 2012 at 2:45 pm

    You know, there is another option. Android. Just sayin’ ;-)

  5. October 3, 2012 at 8:27 pm


  6. October 4, 2012 at 1:39 pm

    I think they should have restrictions on hours. Like “betweeen 9 p.m. and 6 a.m.” I can’t buy anything due to being in an Ambien haze.

  7. October 5, 2012 at 6:36 am

    Awesome. *heads off to fix settings* My toddler plays with my iPhone all the time and I did recently update to iSO 6. I’m not a fan of in-app purchases to begin with, especially in kids apps, but this is just silly. Thanks for sharing, else I’m sure I would have learned the hard way too.

  8. October 5, 2012 at 9:54 am

    Thanks for the reminder! I’ve noticed that I’m not prompted to input my password when updating apps anymore and now that iOS6 is on my phone AND the old 4 we’re using for the in-car attention keeper, I guess I have to make sure the 3 year old can’t rob me blind.

  9. October 5, 2012 at 1:15 pm

    In app purchases make me sort of ragey to begin with, but having the password turned off seems like an INTENTIONAL change so our kids all buy $20 worth of bananas to feed Gina the Giraffe or whatever it is they play while I hide in the bathroom. I’m off to fix the settings on the iPad, if I can pry it away from the baby.

  10. October 5, 2012 at 5:49 pm

    We haven’t had an iPad oopsie purchase yet, but my 3 year did manage to spend $19.99 for 200,000 “coins” for Temple Run on the Kindle Fire.It’s always logged in to Amazon. He doesn’t know how to read but he DOES know what buttons to push in order to keep a game going forward.

    Gonna have to keep a close eye on my Apple receipts…

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