January 28

After some users complained about the iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro tracking location data even when the location services are turned off, Apple has added a new option in iOS 13.3.1 that disable the new Ultra Wideband U1 chip.

The U1 chip uses positioning tech known as an Ultra Wideband (UWB) radio that provides precise location and spatial awareness, so a U1-equipped device can detect its exact position relative to other devices in the same room. iPhone 11 currently uses this system to enhance AirDrop, which can detect the nearest device to show it first in sharing options.

However, according to Apple, this technology is prohibited in some countries, so the iPhone needs to locally collect the device’s location data constantly to know if the user is in a region where UWB is allowed to enable or disable the U1 capabilities. Starting with iOS 13.3.1, users can permanently disable the U1 chip in iOS settings.

If you are concerned about the use of the U1 chip on your iPhone, just follow these simple steps:

How to turn off Ultra Wideband U1 chip on iPhone 11 and 11 Pro

  1. Open the Settings app on your iPhone
  2. Scroll down and tap Privacy
  3. Tap Location Services
  4. Choose System Services from the list
  5. Look for the Networking & Wireless option and then disable it

You’ll now be prompted to disable location for Network & Wireless. Just confirm to completely disable the U1 chip and then your iPhone will no longer track your location all the time. Note that by turning this off, your iPhone will also no longer use location services to enhance Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connections, so keep that in mind.

If you want to activate the U1 chip features again, all you have to do is redo the process in the Settings app.

Check out more of our How To guides here. Are you planning to turn off the U1 chip on your iPhone? Let us know in the comments below.

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