Apple has dismissed reports that it is using iPhone user location data to help tap the market for location-based services.
"Apple is not tracking the location of your iPhone," the company said. "Apple has never done so and has no plans to ever do so."
Apple said it would release a new software update that would cut the size of a wireless hotspot location database stored on its popular iPhones In response to worries about location tracking.
The software will be released in the next few weeks and it will stop backing up that information, Apple said.
While the iPhone doesn't log locations, it does keep "a database of Wi-Fi hotspots and cell towers around your current locations".
This is "to help your iPhone rapidly and accurately calculate its location when requested," Apple said.
Each iPhone stores some location information, which is backed up in iTunes and can also be seen by researchers.
Apple however said the data that researchers see is anonymous and shows only the location of Wi-Fi hotspots and cell towers surrounding the iPhone's location.
The geographic points could be more than 100 miles away from the actual location of the iPhone, it added.
Apple and Google, fierce competitors in mobile computing, have faced sharp criticism since news reports emerged that their phones track the locations of users.