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Verizon applies ESRB ratings to its app and game catalog

News by Andrew Kameka on Tuesday August 14, 2012.

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In November 2011, the CTIA announced that it favors a mobile apps ratings system akin to what the ESRB uses to classify console and PC games. Today, Verizon became the first CTIA member to put that plan into action by introducing ratings for its entire Verizon Apps catalog.

The Verizon Apps store now uses the ESRB system to classify the age appropriateness of every app and game available in its app portal. ESRB, the self-regulatory gaming board responsible for 'M for Mature' and 'E for Everyone' labels on games, worked with the CTIA to devise a similar rating system for mobile apps that Verizon is the first to implement. Verizon Apps now displays a symbol illustrating which age groups should use an app, details about why it received a rating, and warnings about apps that may share personal information or communicate with other users.

Verizon says it launched the CTIA Mobile App Rating System as part of an effort to give parents additional information about which apps their children can access. However, the changes apply only to Verizon Apps, which is an app portal that is not as popular as the iOS App Store or Google Play Store. Google and Apple both opted out of the CTIA's system, preferring to use their own parental controls and content filtering systems already in place.

AT&T, Microsoft, Sprint, T-Mobile, and U.S. Cellular have all expressed support for the CTIA Mobile Apps Rating System, but none of the carriers have said when they plan to implement the system into their products.

source: Verizon

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Andrew Kameka
Andrew is based in Miami, Florida.

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