The FTC has been trying to crack down on medical related apps over the past year, with quite a bit of success. They have fined and helped shut down several apps that claimed to be able to do things such as detect skin cancer. Several months ago they charged the makers of UltimEyes with deceptive marketing. The app, which claims to be able to help improve a user’s vision, remains available on all the major app stores.
The FTC’s final order does not order them to shut down or stop selling the app. Instead they simply need to stop making claims that state that it has been scientifically proven to improve the user’s eye sight. At this point there hasn’t been a high quality scientific study on this specific app, which is why the FTC wants it taken down.
The company is also going to be required to pay $150,000.
This is an interesting final order since it does not prevent the company from continuing to operate largely the way they were. It does impact their marketing efforts, but that is about it. Compared to some of the other orders against medical related apps, this one seems quite mild which may actually speak to the quality of the app itself. Whether or not the app makers will seek to have a study performed or not is not yet known.
While this case was going on the app actually went up in price from $5.99 to $9.99 and seems to be quite successful. How the final order impacts the company will be interesting to see in the coming weeks.