updated 09:30 am EDT, Mon July 7, 2014
Companies ordered to make changes to refund systems
South Korea's Fair Trade Commission has ordered Apple and Google to change their app store policies, according to the Korea Herald. Apple will have to change its default no-refund policy, and send out notifications to App Store users whenever it changes contract terms; Google will have to devise a refund scheme for Google Play that can be tailored to developers' individual policies. The two companies may also have to address other "unfair provisions," though the FTC's announcement doesn't specify what those might be.
Significantly, while Google is limiting its response to South Korea, Apple has told the FTC that it will consider implementing its changes worldwide. The company is typically resistant to creating region-exclusive infrastructures unless absolutely necessary.
At the moment, Apple doesn't offer a method for automatically claiming a refund on apps. Instead customers have to go through the App Store's "Report a Problem" system, in which an individual staffer decides whether or not to grant a refund, if the complaint even reaches that stage. This can make refunds arbitrary, regardless of the reason for wanting money back.