In-app purchasing

In-app purchasing refers to the buying of goods and services from inside an app. Many apps are available to download for free but then offer in-app purchases to maximise the experience of the app. These may include additional app features or content that you can buy within an app, such as recurring subscriptions, ad-free versions, in-game currency, extra lives in a game or full game or app unlocks.

What are the benefits?

  • Quick and seamless transactions
    You don’t need to fill out credit card details with each purchase and can access additional features and content quickly and easily.
  • New content and features are available immediately 
    Whether you are renewing a subscription or buying in-game currency, new content and features are available immediately.
  • You can control in-app purchasing 
    Apple and Android devices allow you to turn off in-app purchasing. Search for instructions on how to do this for your device. 

What are the risks?

  • It can be unclear you are spending money
    Not all apps sufficiently disclose the point at which you are making an in-app purchase.
  • Children can spend money without realising 
    Children using their parent’s devices may not realise that in-app purchases are spending their parent’s money. 
  • It is easy to spend a lot of money without realising 
    You can spend a lot of money within a game or app without realising, because you don’t have to submit credit card details with each transaction. 

You can view In-app purchasing services in the eSafety guide.