We mentioned back in June that iOS 7 uses location data to incorporate Google Now-style info into the Notification Center. In the latest iOS 7 betas, Apple allows users to see some of their frequently visited places in Settings. This helps the system determine how much traffic will be present when you need to head to your next destination.

BuzzFeed highlighted the feature, but as Rene Ritchie writes, this capability is entirely opt-in.

With iOS 7, if BuzzFeed’s report is accurate, and nothing in the process has fundamentally change, it’s a feature that has to be enabled by users on setup (allowing the iPhone to use your location has been opt-in for years), and will now also include a user-facing interface so you can actually see what’s been recorded. And that, apparently, might scare people. Not the headlines that make it sound scary, of course, but the non-hidden, still relatively benign, still opt-in and disable-able, user facing feature.

By virtue of location services in iOS 7 always being able to be disabled by the user, the new user-facing-interface showing your location is actually a transparent move by Apple to ensure the user knows what the system is tracking. Of course, this is still an option, not a requirement. However, this feature will improve location-based services in iOS (for the users), and Apple’s data collection is anonymous.

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10 Responses to “iOS 7 beta privacy settings let you opt-out of ‘Frequent Locations’ feature”

  1. I, for one, will turn this off. I have no interest in my cell provider tracking my every move.


    • John says:

      They already know your every move, based on the cell tower you are connected to. This just allows you to track it, does it not?


    • jb2017 says:

      Turning it “off” won’t stop your cell provider from tracking you. Your always being tracked, no matter if you like it or not.


    • PMZanetti says:

      Sorry to inform you, but they know this data without your consent. Your consent is purchasing an iPhone (or Android for that matter). From the day you purchase an iPhone, Apple, Carrier, and (in the U.S.) the offices of the NSA and probably the DHS as well, have access to at least this much information. It has also been that way for nearly a decade.
      Getting better and more accurate as time goes on, but this has ALWAYS been the case. Your location information is NOT private. Please do not think for a second that there is anything you can do to stop yourself from being tracked and still carrier and activated smartphone.


  2. This is so cool! I can’t wait to try this!


  3. I don’t have this option on either my iPhone4 or iPad3 ! is it an iPhone 5 only ?


  4. As long as nobody other than Apple has my data…


  5. I believe that this is iPhone 5 only. Neither of my iPhone 4 or 4s models has this item available. Interesting that there is an option to turn OFF location-based advertising, though. I approve of that.


  6. BTW – it appears that this data is local to your handset only. There doesn’t seem to be any information from this system being returned to the network in any way. It does appear in your local backups via iTunes, but only if you have “backup encryption” turned on with a password.