Letter to Apple – Location Tracking

Dear Sir,

I run a software company based in the East of England, and we’re very interested to see that you’ve introduced new terms into your iPhone contracts regarding tracking and location information.

We’d like to approach to work with you with this data. We’ve been interested for a long time in tracking technologies, but the cost of tracking hardware has made this prohibitively expensive.

Naturally, we want to avoid the legal difficulties of the Data Protection Act, so the fact that you anonymise this data is very interesting to us. It solves a lot of legal and privacy problems! I’m sure you want to avoid any legal difficulties, not least of all after the ‘Aerialgate’ scandal! As an aside, I’m very impressed with the way you’ve managed to ensure your users believe there is no fault; yet you’re offering a case to ‘fix’ the non-existent problem. This must be costing a lot of money, but is a wonderful piece of PR!

We’d be interested in collating this data, but we have some questions first;

  • Is tracking only done with the location system on the iPhone, or do you also collect data from AGPS, GPS and cell-tower triangulation too?
  • Is the anonymous data entirely anonymous? I presume there’s no need for Data Protection involvement since it contains no personal information
  • Is location data grouped by customer?

If this is the case, we’d be very interested in working with you. We’d like to develop a system where users visiting and paying for our service would be able to ‘pick’ a customer by selecting a number of locations that their ‘target’ has been seen in. Then from this, we could ensure this is a unique user, and display their currently location.

This could be perhaps a husband or wife; selecting their home and work addresses, ensuring there it is the person they want to locate. Or perhaps it could be a person who has seen someone they like a number of times, can pinpoint the location and times they’ve seen them, and find the user, anonymously, that way. Their current location could then be gathered from your collected data, and shown using mapping software.

We’d be really interested in progressing with this as early as possible. Please feel free to contact me by email, via our website, or by telephone. I look forward to hearing from you!

Thanks,

Dug Stokes
frag.co.uk Director


  1. […] This entry was posted on Tuesday, July 20th, 2010 at 1:22 pm and is filed under Twitter. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site. Letter to Apple – Location Tracking […]

  2. Don’t hold it that way.

Leave a Reply