Apple will be launching IOS 11 in September of this year, with changes including the much-publicized features regarding Location Usage. Among other things, the update will alter: The Blue Status Bar that appears when an app tracks the user, the Arrow included in said bar, and the options related to restricting apps’ usage of location services.
The Blue status bar will now give the user information via a line of text specifying in real time, apps that are tracking them while being used and apps that tracking them continuously, the latter not being included in IOS 10. The arrow functionality has been improved to show exactly when an app begins using location services by transitioning from an outline to solid, paralleling the app requesting location data to the point where it actually begins tracking. It is unclear at this point whether the Blue Status bar and Arrow notifications can be toggled for certain apps chosen by the user, ex: family location apps.
In addition to informing the user, the update will also allow more in depth alteration of app permissions. In the past, users have been able to choose if an app uses location on an “Always” and “Never” basis. Some apps would allow the feature “While Using the App.” IOS 11 will keep the “While Using the App” feature available for all apps, a function that app developers would often exclude.
The implications of these features impact the user, app developers, and Apple. By providing more information about what apps are tracking them and the tools to alter the app permissions, Apple has given the user more control over their privacy. In the terms of apps, “The change could impact apps that heavily rely on location data – whether that’s because of their use case, like Foursquare or Moves, or because they sneak access to location data for less reputable purposes, like reselling location data to vendors or displaying location-based ads without users knowing.” Sarah Perez from TechCrunch. With the ability to alter how and when location services are being used, battery life will likely be increased; apple often kneels to its biggest competitor, Samsung, when it comes to battery capabilities.
Learn more information about the Apple iOS 11 fall update.