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Apple Adds Toggle to Disable Ultra Wideband in iOS 13.3.1 Beta 2

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Back in December, it was discovered an iPhone 11 Pro with its location services turned off for individual apps would still collect user data, as reported by security researcher Brian Krebs.

Apple responded later to admit the issue was related to Ultra Wideband technology, found in the iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro with its new U1 chip, which allows for devices to talk to each other, similar to Bluetooth. The company said a toggle would be coming to disable Ultra Wideband and now it has popped up in the latest iOS 13.3.1 beta 2 for developers, released in the last week.

The screenshot below shared by tech YouTuber, Brandon Butch, shows a new toggle for Networking & Wireless under Privacy > Location Services > System Services:

Ultrawideband toggle



“What’s weird about this toggle is that I’m 99.9% positive that it wasn’t there on day 1 of this beta being released. Apple must’ve added it as a hotfix with no indication of it being added. Strange,” writes Butch.

“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,” said Apple back in December. “iOS uses Location Services to help determine if iPhone is in these prohibited locations in order to disable ultra wideband and comply with regulations.”

Ultra wideband is said to power Apple’s rumoured ‘Apple Tags’, which are said to be Tile-like trackers and possibly debuting at some point in the future.

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