WASHINGTON (AP) -- Can a mobile app really teach a baby to find her nose, or to recognize letters and numbers?
Not according to an advocacy group that filed a complaint today with the Federal Trade Commission. The Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood alleges that two developers of popular baby apps -- Fisher Price and Open Solutions -- are trying to dupe parents into thinking their online games make infants and toddlers smarter.
The group is the same one whose allegations against "Baby Einstein" videos eventually led to nationwide consumer refunds.
This is the campaign's first complaint against the mobile app industry, part of a broader push to hold accountable businesses that market technology to very young children and their parents.
Fisher-Price hasn't commented on the complaint. But Open Solutions, in a statement, says it agrees that electronics aren't a substitute for human interaction. The company says the app alone isn't what teaches the baby -- but that it can "help parents with babies," either by entertaining them or helping the babies "see new things."
APPHOTO NYBZ150: FILE - In this Friday, Oct. 21, 2011 file photo, Frankie Thevenot, 3, plays with an iPad in his bedroom at his home in Metairie, La. As of Wednesday, Aug. 7, 2013, the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood, a Boston-based group, is urging federal investigators to examine the marketing practices of Fisher-Price's and Open Solution's mobile apps. It's the campaign's first complaint against the mobile app industry as part of its broader push to hold accountable businesses that market technology to very young children and their parents. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert, File) (21 Oct 2011)
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