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New ACCC app lets shoppers know their rights

A new app from the ACCC details consumer rights in one handy location.

A new app from the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) details consumer rights in one handy location.

(Credit: ACCC)

What rights do you have if an item you purchased doesn't do what the salesperson told you it would, or an item you placed on lay-by went on sale?

ACCC Shopper for iOS and Android has just been released to help you figure it out. The app details what your rights may or may not be when it comes to making purchases. In an easy-to-navigate format, it provides information on refunds and returns, warranties and lay-bys. For example, we found out that if a lay-by item goes on sale, the customer is not entitled to a discount to the sale price; but a defective product that is no longer under warranty can still be replaced free of charge.

In each scenario, the app explains the customer's rights, and why the customer does or does not have rights in any given situation.

The app's usefulness goes beyond the purely legal, though. Some additional features make it a shopping companion must-have.

The first is an explanation of what various product labels mean; for example, "Product of" versus "Made in".

The second is a personal receipt-storage and reminder service. You can use your phone's camera from within the app to photograph your receipts and store them for future reference, or set alerts to remind yourself about due payments for lay-bys and upcoming warranty expirations.

Finally, if you ever wanted to know about olive oil, there's a whole sub-menu devoted to what different kinds of olive oil mean, and tips for keeping it fresh. We're not entirely sure why olive oil is so important that it needs its very own category, but we're not about to turn up our noses at something informative, even if it seems oddly placed.

You can download ACCC Shopper for iOS here and for Android here.