To provide location-based services on Apple products, Apple and our partners and licensees may collect, use, and share precise location data, including the real-time geographic location of your Apple computer or device. This location data is collected anonymously in a form that does not personally identify you and is used by Apple and our partners and licensees to provide and improve location-based products and services. For example, we may share geographic location with application providers when you opt in to their location services.
Before you get up in arms, consider that Google also collects location-based data from Android phones. Such data is necessary for location-based services, and Apple is letting users block third-party applications from accessing location information. However, there appears to be no way to prevent Apple itself from collecting data. In fact, there’s a penalty for not opting in.
Coincidentally, the iGiant is preparing to debut its iAd advertising service next week. Apple will presumably be sharing location-based data with advertisers, which surely count as partners under the new policy.
You may withdraw this consent at any time by going to the Location Services setting on your iPhone and either turning off the global Location Services setting or turning off the individual location settings of each location-aware application on your iPhone.
If you’d rather not have Steve Jobs tracking your iDevice’s ever move, there’s an opt-out for that.