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Apple Profits from Product Madness Gambling Games Class Action

Are gambling games illegal under state laws if players can’t win money? Yes, says this class action, and Apple, Inc. profits from such games, some of which are developed by a company called Product Madness, Inc. (PM). Apple’s App Store is a point of distribution for the games, and Apple takes a cut of the profits.

Not all of the games in the Apple App Store cost money to get; some are free to download, but offer in-app features that cost money to obtain. When games created on the Apple platform charge money for in-app purchases, Apple processes the payments and takes up to 30% as a commission.

The complaint claims that the app could thus not be offered or downloaded, and players could not make purchases, without Apple and its facilities. The complaint alleges, “Apple also provides marketing guidance, tools, promotional offers, and more to help drive discovery of Apps and in-app purchases. For example, Apple features select Apps on the App Store.”

Among the games the Apple App Store offers are gambling games, such as casino-style slot machines and table games. Games developed by PM and distributed through the store include Cashman Casino, FaFaFa Gold Casino, Lightning Link Casino, and Slots: Heart of Vegas.”

When players first begin one of these games, they are allowed a certain number of free coins or chips. Players who win earn more of these coins or chips and therefore get more playing time. When they lose, however, they lose coins or chips. Eventually players run out of the coins or chips and when that happens, players are offered more coins or chips in exchange for a payment of real money.

The complaint alleges, “Paying money in a game for a chance to win more playing time violates the antigambling laws of the twenty-five states that are at issue in this case.”

According to the complaint, people in the US lost approximately $3.5 billion playing these “free” games. The complaint points out, “Most of the revenue earned from these casino-style Apps (i.e., 80-90%) is made from a small portion (i.e., about 3% of their players, who are specifically targeted because of the large amounts they will spend.”

The complaint says that while the governments of some countries regulate these games, “[r]egrettably, such games have avoided regulation in the United States, resulting in thousands of consumers spending millions of dollars to become addicted to these unlawful games…”

The Multistate Class is all persons who paid money to Apple for coins to bet on the PM Casino Apps and who live in Alabama, Arkansas, Connecticut, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Oregon, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and West Virginia. Each of these states also has its own class.

Article Type: Lawsuit
Topic: Consumer

Most Recent Case Event

Apple Profits from Product Madness Gambling Games Complaint

March 9, 2021

Are gambling games illegal under state laws if players can’t win money? Yes, says this class action, and Apple, Inc. profits from such games, some of which are developed by a company called Product Madness, Inc. (PM). Apple’s App Store is a point of distribution for the games, and Apple takes a cut of the profits.

Apple Profits from Product Madness Gambling Games Complaint

Case Event History

Apple Profits from Product Madness Gambling Games Complaint

March 9, 2021

Are gambling games illegal under state laws if players can’t win money? Yes, says this class action, and Apple, Inc. profits from such games, some of which are developed by a company called Product Madness, Inc. (PM). Apple’s App Store is a point of distribution for the games, and Apple takes a cut of the profits.

Apple Profits from Product Madness Gambling Games Complaint
Tags: Electronic Games, Entertainment, Gambling or Gambling Games