Apple will now allow customers in Europe to return songs, movies, apps, and other digital media purchased through iTunes and the App Store within 14 days, regardless of their reason for wanting to make the return. The policy change has been spotted in the UK, France, Germany, and other EU countries. While it is perhaps an unsurprising change in that it falls in line with an EU directive — which recently began requiring 14-day return periods for online purchases — Apple could have chosen to take advantage of an exception that would allow it to prohibit returns on digital goods, but it appears to have decided against doing that.
That directive is meant to give consumers protection over online purchases, but it does allow digital goods to be treated differently. Because Apple isn't doing that, it's possible for songs to be listened to, movies to be watched, and apps to be used before a return is made through iTunes. While those scenarios aren't impossible for physical media either, they're something that the specific sellers of those items will likely accept begrudgingly. That's also a reason you probably shouldn't expect this policy to expand outside the EU, unless a law compels the change. Apple did not respond to a request for comment on the new policy.