Ok ok, we get it. The secret location file that came to light last week is a glitch, and is being fixed. This article isn’t about the potential dangers that are involved with this location information, but the possibilities it brings for future iOS features.

Apple posted a Q&A article this morning to set the record straight about the controversial tracking file. One of the questions was, “What other location data is Apple collecting on the iPhone besides crowd-sourced Wi-Fi hotspot and cell tower data?”

According to the report, Apple is now collecting anonymous traffic data to build a crowd-sourced traffic database. The goal is for Apple to provide iPhone users with an improved traffic service in the next couple of years. What could Apple be planning that uses a traffic service?

MacRumors seems to think that Apple is planning to drop the traffic experience into an all new turn-by-turn navigation system, separate from the Maps application, included in iOS. They also believe the service will be driven by Google.

This should ring a bell to folks who have been following the breadcrumbs over the last few years. In 2009, Apple bought PlaceBase, a GPS mapping software company. More recently, we’ve seen Apple job postings requesting new iOS Maps Application Developers.

We don’t know if this is going to be a separate application, or be an evolution of the current Maps app. We also don’t see it being driven by Google, as the competition between the 2 companies continually heats up. Regardless of who develops, iOS is long overdue for a navigation app with turn-by-turn voice directions.

What do you think?

  • “Regardless of who develops, iOS is long overdue for a navigation app with turn-by-turn voice directions”

    Whats wrong with Navigon, TomTom, iGo and a bunch of other apps with Turn-by-turn voice directions?

    Besides, I’m still not sure they are talking about road traffic, but rather network traffic.

    How will an iPhone know weather a person is walking down the street looking in occasional shop windows or is sitting in a car stuck in a slow moving traffic jam on the same street?

    Navigon already has opt-in crowd sourced traffic checking, and here it makes sense since the app is primarily used for driving in a car.

    • JasonT

      I believe he’s talking about the gps software that will come with the iPhone. Like the google map we current have. Not another apps we download.

  • Jason Masters

    They are making An update to better hide the secret tracking file!
    if you would have read the terms and conditions it’s in there also that you’ll allow apple to sow your mouth to another users asshole lol!!!

    • Alec

      Human centipede… Gross