Apple offers 14-day returns on iTunes buys

What happened?

Apple is letting iTunes users who live in the EU return paid-for items such as apps and songs after 14 days, without having to give a reason.

European laws for online sales currently give web shoppers a “right of withdrawal”, but alow companies to refuse refunds once an app has been used or a song listened to. Apple’s new rules mean buyers can “return” digital goods, even after they’ve been used. This has led to complaints from some developers that users will play a game or Ssten to an album for two weeks for free. Google Play users have long had the ability to get free refunds on downloads, but only for two hours after purchase.

How will it affect you?

If you’ve ever accidentally bought the wrong track or downloaded a paid-for app only to realise a free alternative is just as good, youl be happy to see Apple giving more power to iTunes shoppers. It also means you can try an app for longer and get your money back if it’s not up to scratch. It may seem like a feature that’s open to abuse, but getting a refund isn’t as simple as clicking a button. To get your money back, you’ll need to contact Apple and use its ‘Report a Problem* facility to provide the name of the item and when it was bought, along with your name and address.

What do we think?

It’s easy to understand why developers may not like this rule change, because some customers are bound to try to exploit it. even if Apple does make us jump through a few hoops to get a refund. We’re always happy to see digital companies making it easier to shop online, though it’s hard to see why anyone needs 14 days to Ssten to a music track. On the other hand, it makes it easier to try an app for a longer period at no risk. Developers wil hopefully respond by creating better software and games.

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