Apple User Charged \$4,000 for OS X Lion Download

Dennis Faas's picture

How much are you willing to spend on a brand-spanking-new operating system? $50? $100? $200?

How about $4,000?

$4,000 is the ghastly sum that was allegedly charged to the PayPal account of one Apple fan who recently downloaded the Cupertino-based company's newest operating system, Mac OS X Lion.

Released July 20, 2011, Mac OS X Lion is the most recent version of Apple's flagship operating system. In just its first day of availability, Lion took a serious bite out the competition, being downloaded a reported one million times. It's the best start for any Apple OS, ever. (Source:

PayPal, iTunes User Charged 121 Times Over

John Christman was one of those early adopters. On July 23 he purchased Lion for $31.79, taxes included. At first it sounded like a good deal: just over $30 for an operating system that introduces a revamped interface and, in many ways, improves on previous versions of the Apple OS.

Unfortunately, when he went to his PayPal account to verify that the purchase went through, Christman was stunned to find that his account had been charged not once, not twice, but 121 times over, for a total charge of $3,878.40.

Immediately Christman contacted both PayPal and Apple, and unfortunately found neither one willing to take any of the blame.

"Apple blames PayPal, PayPal blames Apple," Christman said.

"They both are claiming to investigate but I am stuck broke for three days now. Apple claims there was only one transaction. When I told PayPal to dispute them, they closed the cases and marked the items as refunded on the 23rd. Bear in mind this money was taken and never returned yet." (Source:

Extra Charges a Widespread Issue

Christman is still trying to figure out what went wrong. He believes it may be associated with an iCloud feature that allows iTunes to automatically download previous purchases.

"I logged into our developer account and got the latest iTunes Beta, and installed it," Christman said. "iTunes has a cool new feature to download all your purchased apps for you. I clicked download all. As each download started, it charged me $31.79. Some apps came fast, some took longer, but the timing was directly related to when a new app started to download."

Unfortunately, this doesn't appear to be an isolated case. AppleInsider is reporting that this issue has affected a number of users, many of whom are being told by PayPal that the problem is iTunes'. (Source:

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