As we discussed in our comparison between the iPhone’s App Store and the Android’s Market, the Google system has one massive advantage over Apple’s – a no quibbles 24 hour refund system.

If you don’t take to a paid game or application, you can return it to the Market for a full refund, no questions asked. There’s pretty much no chance in living hell that Apple’s ever going to do something like this, but it does have some serious advantages for all concerned.

It’s essentially a safety net and built in demo system, which allows users to purchase with confidence while encouraging developers to do their best from the outset. Many iPhone games are notorious for launching before they’ re ready, then taking up the slack in updates further down the line (Watchmen: Justice is Coming, we’re looking at you).

With Google’s system, that’s going to mean practically every purchase is returned, and the Market develops a kind of organic, global, user-led quality control system.

Yes, it’s potentially open to abuse, but it’s a risk that we feel is well worth it and could really help cement the Market’s place in the paying smartphone user’s heart.

So here’s how to take your unwanted games back to the Market for a full refund.

One last thing – we’re not suggesting anything by using Guitar Hero: World Tour as an example (it’s the only paid app we’ve got on the office G1 right at this very moment). That’s for our full review to decide later on.

Go to the Market and find your way back to the listing for the application you’re returning.
Click it to bring up the listing in full. Where previously there was a ‘buy’ button, there’s now an ‘Uninstall & refund’ button.
Press the ‘Uninstall & refund’ button. Be aware that the process begins immediately - there’s no other warning once you press the button.
Afterwards you’ll be taken to a screen where you can provide a bit of developer feedback, which is always helpful (so make an effort and be fair).
By this point you should have received an email confirming the refund has taken place. From what we can tell, the Google Checkout system doesn’t actually charge your card until the 24 hour period is up, so there’s no buggering about - the transaction simply never took place. A very reassuring way to buy games. NOTE: Be warned that the refund only works once per game, so if you decide to install the same game again, you're stuck with it.