Apple, an American and global tech giant, faces a lawsuit for alleged claims that it has been offering illegal gambling software through its Apple Store. The disputable apps have been created by one particular software developer, DoubleU Games.
The petition against the tech company and the Korean software developer was filed on April 6 in the US District Court for the Northern District of Columbia. It claims that the apps provided by DoubleU Games violate a number of state laws pertaining to gambling.
Lawsuit Focused on Apple Apps’ In-Game Purchases
The lawsuit goes as far as to say that Apple operates as an “unlicensed casino” because the apps it offers facilitate illegal gambling activities. More specifically, it states,
“Accordingly, Apple actively enables, permits, promotions, and profits from illegal gambling.”
The main bone of contention are in-game currencies found in free gambling games. The lawsuit recognizes that, while players don’t use real money to gamble in the app, they do use it to buy in-game chips and coins, but with no possibility of cashing in on their winnings.
“Paying money in a game for a chance to win more playing time violates the anti-gambling laws of at least 25 states,”
the lawsuit asserts. As a result of this, it proposes that legal action be taken in those states.
The lawsuit against the tech giant was filed by Michael Helsel and Joshua McDonald, who have both allegedly fallen victims to Apple’s unlawful apps. McDonald has spent $4.99 on in-game currencies, while Hensel reports having been set back by $107.99 on several occasions due to coin transactions and other in-game purchases.
Past Lawsuits Against Apple
This is not the first time Apple has been accused of facilitating illegal gambling software. In October 2020, Karen Workman sued Apple for reportedly operating unlawful casino apps. The event that led to this outcome was her spending thousands of dollars on in-game purchases.
To be exact, Karen reportedly spent a total of $3,312.19 purchasing coins over a six-month period. The plaintiff sought a refund of the entire sum, together with her attorneys’ fees and an award for
“her services in this case on behalf of the class.”
The complaint read that
“Apple is not some minor or incidental participant in these illegal gambling games. It is the principal promoter and facilitator of the illegal activity. Apple maintains dictatorial control over what apps can be downloaded from the App Store and the payment method to purchase in-app items.”
Another instance happened in February when the company was at the receiving end of a $5 million lawsuit claiming that Apple was profiting from a 30% share from in-game purchases within casino-style games.
Apple was targeted for not only aiding the distribution of the controversial apps but also providing the developers with data on customers and facilitating in-app purchases for a big portion of the profit.