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Aussie iPhone app developer implicated in A Current Affair expose

$1.99 children's app accused of having hidden charges

A Current Affair has incorrectly used footage of a Brisbane developed smartphone app in its expose on the hidden price of iPad applications, a local developer has claimed.

Speaking to Computerworld Australia, Sam Daley said video and audio footage of his Happyville Pet Shop app was used in the story, as the show spoke with one family who were charged $4000 in hidden costs from the Tap Pet Hotel app.

“It [A Current Affair] was doing a sensationalist story on ‘apps trying to steal your money’,” Daley said. “It centred on a family that had inadvertently spent thousands of dollars in a completely different app.

“...The story featured that app heavily but also made mention of another app vaguely titled ‘Pet Shop’ and regularly referred to the offending apps in pluralised terms.”

Daley began working on the Happyville app in his spare time six months ago, saying that the story follows the format of a picture book by featuring interactive pets on each page.

Daley said footage of his app was run half way through the story as the reporter described the hidden costs of the ‘Pet Shop’ app.

“My app has no extra charges hidden away within it like the main focus of the story, but the story seems to imply otherwise,” Daley says.

“...It's available for iPhone and Android, with the iPad version arriving in the App Store any day now. It costs $1.99 with no hidden In App Purchases as implied in the A Current Affair story.”

Using online Forum Reddit to seek guidance, Daley said the response of the online community has been overwhelmingly positive and supportive.

Despite informing A Current Affair of his concerns, Daley said the show insisted he would not get an on-air or online correction about the misunderstanding.

“If it wasn't for the online support I would've felt like a victim, but I really feel like the positive response has outweighed any negativity caused by A Current Affair,” he said.

“People keep asking why I'm not angry but this whole experience has left me feeling empowered. Go Internet!”

Editors note: A Current Affair was contacted for comment on Daley's claims but has not yet responded

Follow Lisa Banks on Twitter: @CapricaStar

Follow Computerworld Australia on Twitter: @ComputerworldAU

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