Apple Q&A on Location Data


6. People have identified up to a year’s worth of location data being stored on the iPhone. Why does my iPhone need so much data in order to assist it in finding my location today?

This data is not the iPhone’s location data — it is a subset (cache) of the crowd-sourced Wi-Fi hotspot and cell tower database which is downloaded from Apple into the iPhone to assist the iPhone in rapidly and accurately calculating location. The reason the iPhone stores so much data is a bug we uncovered and plan to fix shortly (see Software Update section below). We don’t think the iPhone needs to store more than seven days of this data.

A good response to the location-logging controversy. A cogent description of what data Apple is collecting and why, and what data your iPhone is caching and why. The petulant your-questions-are-based-on-stupid-assumptions tone of the first few questions has Steve Jobs written all over it, though.

Wednesday, 27 April 2011