If you have heard, Apple released its newest operating system -- OS4 -- for download. If you didn’t (or couldn’t) order the iPhone 4 last week, you can sample some of its newest features via the iOS4 download.
The new update also features new language and conditions, some of which are making users a little uncomfortable. Let's take a look.
OS4 Tracks Your Every Move
Twitter is abuzz about news that Apple is tracking and sharing users’ location data. According to a new clause included in its iOS4 update, Apple warns that it will share "precise location data" with its partners and licensees.
At first this sounds alarming, but upon closer inspections it’s not much different that what Google already does with its Android platform. As well, the information gathered by iPad and iPhone devices is not so much about where you have been, but more about the device and services that are being accessed on it, which supposedly helps developers and third-party companies improve the performance and capabilities of their apps.
Users must agree to the new language before downloading new apps and includes the following:
To provide location-based services on Apple products, Apple and our partners and licensees may collect, use, and share precise location data, including the real-time geographic location of your Apple computer or device. This location data is collected anonymously in a form that does not personally identify you and is used by Apple and our partners and licensees to provide and improve location-based products and services. For example, we may share geographic location with application providers when you opt in to their location services.
Is this a big deal? Some may think it is, others won't. Collecting information is what companies do. If done correctly, it might make newer versions better. As well, it helps new features work properly, like the MobileMe “Find my iPhone” and GoogleMaps.
iAds Lets you Opt Out
Though users may have a hard time opting-out of the aforementioned location data collection, Apple is showing some flexibility when it comes to its iAd platform. Apple has launched an official page, which allows iOS device users to opt out of personal data collection, such as information regarding downloads and purchases, for its iAds mobile advertising service.
By visiting oo.apple.com on any device running iOS 4, users can choose to opt out of data collection for iAds and receive the desired "You have successfully opted out."
Users who opt out may see the same ads as before, but they may be less relevant because they will not be based on their interests.