The recent disclosure that Apple's iPhone and Google's Android phones track users locations has attracted a lot of attention.
The issue has even reached US parliament with US Congress and FCC looking into the issue. To garner Apple CEO Steve Jobs take on the issue a MacRumors reader reportedly emailed him seeking clarifications on the issue and at the same time hinting about a switch to Android. Jobs reportedly responded, claiming that Apple does not track users and the information is "false". He, however, said that Android does track users.
Q: Steve, could you please explain the necessity of the passive location-tracking tool embedded in my iPhone? It's kind of unnerving knowing that my exact location is being recorded at all times. Maybe you could shed some light on this for me before I switch to a Droid. They don't track me.
A: Oh yes they do. We don't track anyone. The info circulating around is false.
A pair of British security researchers recently said that the latest version of Apple's operating system for iPhone and iPad is constantly recording the location of the devices and storing the information in a hidden file.
Alasdair Allan and Pete Warden said the position-logging feature is contained in iOS 4. "Ever since iOS 4 arrived, your device has been storing a long list of locations and time stamps," they said in an article posted at the website radar.oreilly.com.
"We're not sure why Apple is gathering this data, but it's clearly intentional," the researchers said, adding that it raises a number of "security and privacy implications."