There appears to be a privacy issue with the iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro, but Apple has already sent out an explanation.
Security expert Brian Krebs claimed earlier this week that the new iPhone models appear to be requesting location data after a user has switched it off in their privacy settings. Apple has now revealed to TechCrunch that ultra wideband technology is to blame, and that it will roll out a fix through a future software update. Here's what an Apple spokesperson told the publication:
“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 ultra wideband and comply with regulations. The management of ultra wideband compliance and its use of location data is done entirely on the device and Apple is not collecting user location data."
When Apple launched the iPhone 11 in September, it included a new U1 chip that communicates with other U1-equipped device - but without requiring cellphone towers or satellites. This U1 chip will likely also help power Apple Tag, Apple's upcoming Tile-like device. But apparently this chip has been causing the latest iPhones to seemingly request location data when users don't want to share it.
Krebs has asked Apple about why this is occuring, and Apple reportedly told him it does not see any "actual security implications":
"It is expected behavior that the Location Services icon appears in the status bar when Location Services is enabled. The icon appears for system services that do not have a switch in Settings."
TechCrunch says Apple is now admitting the U1 chip is the culprit, and that Apple claims to not collect or store your location data because this is all happening directly on your device. Either way, the company will supposedly roll out a toggle that will let you switch everything off in the future.