February 25, 2024

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An online dispute over police warnings arises after iOS 17.1 software update

An online dispute over police warnings arises after iOS 17.1 software update

Salt Lake City – Police departments across the US posted social media posts days after the iPhone iOS 17.1 software update, hinting that the default feature could be dangerous.

Other sources across the web e.g Wired And USA Today They published a debunking of this claim, starting with the truth of it Apple announced this feature back in June At the 2023 Developers Conference.

The feature is called NameDrop, which was presented at the conference as an extension of AirDrop. With the new iOS update, NameDrop is turned on by default on all updated devices, including Apple Watches with the new 10.1 update.

The feature works by placing the top of the two devices close to each other. What happens next is something most social posts fail to mention.

iPhone users who enable NameDrop will be prompted with the option to ‘Share’ their contact, or alternatively ‘Receive Only’. Users can also opt out of the feature and choose not to perform any of these options.

Ultimately, NameDrop cannot be completed without the iPhone user taking action.

Screenshot of feature demo at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference in 2023. (Apple Inc. via YouTube)

An Apple spokesperson told USA Today that “before a user can continue using NameDrop and choose what contact information they want to share, they will need to make sure their device is unlocked. NameDrop does not work with locked devices.”

Some social posts made by police have been updated with more information and acknowledgment that their concerns were based on safety precautions.

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The feature can be deactivated, which is what several commenters have said. By going to “General Settings” then “AirDrop”, the user can uncheck the “Bringing Devices Together” icon to turn off the feature.

AirDrop settings On your Apple iPhone, NameDrop appears enabled.  (KSL TV)

AirDrop settings On your Apple iPhone, NameDrop appears enabled. (KSL TV)