IOS 7’s controversial new feature: Frequent Locations tracking map

Apple's upcoming iOS 7 mobile operating system will have a feature that shows users a map of the locations they visit most often.
(Eric Risberg / Associated Press)
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Want to know what place you visit most, how often you visit and for how long? There’s an iOS 7 feature for that.

Apple this week rolled out a new version of iOS 7 beta, and inside there is a feature called Frequent Locations that shows users a map of the places they visit most.

Using little blue circles, the feature displays the spots users visit most along with other data, such as the place’s name or address, how many times a user has visited and how long each trip lasted.


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The feature, which was pointed out on Hacker News and highlighted by Buzzfeed, is neat in a way and disturbing in another. Frequent Locations is designed by Apple to be able to provide users with useful location information as well as help improve the company’s mapping app, but it’s also a reminder that the little device in your hand is always phoning home with information about where you are and what you’re up to.

Users can turn off the features if they want. To do so, users need to go to their Settings app, then tap Privacy, Location Services, System Services and, finally, Frequent Locations. Once in that page, simply toggle the options off.

For now, most users don’t have to worry about this feature, considering it is only on iOS 7 beta, which is made for developers. But when iOS 7 does come out this fall, check the Settings app and decide if you want the feature on or off.


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