After reports of users claiming their iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max handsets are seeking their location information even when they have turned the location settings off, and after detailed research on the issue was published by a renowned security specialist, Apple has promised a fix.
Apple had initially dismissed the location data findings which security specialist Brian Krebs had documented in a video as "expected behavior." Apple says the iPhone 11 range's new Ultra wideband chip is behind the background activity that seeks the location information.
Apple said in a statement: "Ultra wideband technology is an industry standard technology and is subject to international regulatory requirements that require it to be turned off in certain locations. iOS uses Location Services to help determine if an iPhone is in these prohibited locations in order to disable the ultra wideband and comply with these regulations."
Upcoming iOS update to fix it
Apple has also clarified that the management of ultra-wideband compliance and its location usage is done entirely on the device and that the company isn't collecting any user location data. This clarification is in keeping with initial research. Apple says it will completely disable these background location checks in an upcoming iOS update.
According to a 9to5Mac report, the background location checks issue will be fixed with the upcoming iOS 13.3 update that will be released next week. The update, apart from the fix, is also expected to bring along support for FIDO2 security keys and a new set of parental controls for keeping a check on phone, message and FaceTime usage based on contact and time.