iPad Why apps suddenly ask for bluetooth access after installation of iPad OS public beta?

hajime

macrumors 603
Original poster
Jul 23, 2007
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This had never happened before but after installation of the beta, some apps asked for access to bluetooth. What is happening? Should I allow access?
 

Feenician

macrumors 603
Jun 13, 2016
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This had never happened before but after installation of the beta, some apps asked for access to bluetooth. What is happening? Should I allow access?
It's a new safeguard. In iOS 12 those apps were simply using Bluetooth without asking you. As for whether you should allow it, consider whether the app: -

A) Needs to connect to a Bluetooth accessory of some kind
B) You don't mind the app using Bluetooth to identify approximate location for you
 

hajime

macrumors 603
Original poster
Jul 23, 2007
5,386
753
It's a new safeguard. In iOS 12 those apps were simply using Bluetooth without asking you. As for whether you should allow it, consider whether the app: -

A) Needs to connect to a Bluetooth accessory of some kind
B) You don't mind the app using Bluetooth to identify approximate location for you
Thanks. Am I correct that if I want to use Apple Pencil in some apps, I have to grant them permission to use BT?
 

Feenician

macrumors 603
Jun 13, 2016
5,180
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Thanks. Am I correct that if I want to use Apple Pencil in some apps, I have to grant them permission to use BT?
I'm not 100% sure about that. I'd err on the side of caution and deny it first time if I were you. You can always enable it under Privacy -> Bluetooth Sharing again if something doesn't seem to work properly.
 

yegon

macrumors 68030
Oct 20, 2007
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I may be wrong, but from what I’ve heard it’s mostly being used and abused for yet more tracking, bravo for the ability to deny it.

Doesn’t seem to affect audio over BT. Consequently, I’ve denied it every time and seen no adverse affects yet.
 

Shirasaki

macrumors G3
May 16, 2015
9,426
3,441
Thanks. Am I correct that if I want to use Apple Pencil in some apps, I have to grant them permission to use BT?
Hmm, I do not have any third party app that can use Apple Pencil. But I feel this is not the case.
 

steve23094

macrumors 68030
Apr 23, 2013
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I may be wrong, but from what I’ve heard it’s mostly being used and abused for yet more tracking, bravo for the ability to deny it.

Doesn’t seem to affect audio over BT. Consequently, I’ve denied it every time and seen no adverse affects yet.
Thanks for that. I had assumed it was for audio, as apps that had asked for use were media related. Just tested it out though and you’re absolutely right, denying access had no detrimental effect.
 
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dynalmadman

macrumors member
May 1, 2010
91
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Vegas, baby!
I find it interesting that on my iPad, there were 4 apps so far that asked for access. On my iPhone Xs not one app has asked. Basically running same thing on both devices.
 

yegon

macrumors 68030
Oct 20, 2007
2,711
804
I find it interesting that on my iPad, there were 4 apps so far that asked for access. On my iPhone Xs not one app has asked. Basically running same thing on both devices.
That is surprising. I’d have imagined it’d be more prevalent on the phone as it’s used more and carried everywhere in most cases, versus an iPad.

I’ve only installed the beta on my 12.9” iPP, there was a lot of features that I wanted from the update, whereas I’m sticking to iOS12 on my phone until it’s gold most likely.
 

jhfenton

macrumors 6502a
Dec 11, 2012
934
481
Cincinnati, Ohio
I like it. The array of apps that have asked for permission was surprising. Why would my credit union app need direct Bluetooth access? Or the app for my 401(k)?

So far on my iPhone, I've only granted permission for Waze, ErgData (the Concept2 exercise equipment app), and the app for my smart scale.

ErgData and the scale app use direct Bluetooth connections, so it makes sense that they would need access. I should probably turn it off for Waze and see if it really needs it.
 

chrfr

macrumors G3
Jul 11, 2009
8,195
2,524
Thanks. Am I correct that if I want to use Apple Pencil in some apps, I have to grant them permission to use BT?
No, that should not be necessary.
[doublepost=1561555065][/doublepost]
I like it. The array of apps that have asked for permission was surprising. Why would my credit union app need direct Bluetooth access? Or the app for my 401(k)?

So far on my iPhone, I've only granted permission for Waze, ErgData (the Concept2 exercise equipment app), and the app for my smart scale.

ErgData and the scale app use direct Bluetooth connections, so it makes sense that they would need access. I should probably turn it off for Waze and see if it really needs it.
Waze is probably using it for tracking purposes. https://venturebeat.com/2016/09/21/waze-beacons-tunnels/
 
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yegon

macrumors 68030
Oct 20, 2007
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804
I like it. The array of apps that have asked for permission was surprising. Why would my credit union app need direct Bluetooth access? Or the app for my 401(k)?

So far on my iPhone, I've only granted permission for Waze, ErgData (the Concept2 exercise equipment app), and the app for my smart scale.

ErgData and the scale app use direct Bluetooth connections, so it makes sense that they would need access. I should probably turn it off for Waze and see if it really needs it.
I’d try using both with access denied, it wouldn’t surprise me if the actual BT connection functions normally, and that it’s purely for tracking and data collection, as others have stated.
 

iCarabma

macrumors 6502
Feb 22, 2012
290
40
I’d try using both with access denied, it wouldn’t surprise me if the actual BT connection functions normally, and that it’s purely for tracking and data collection, as others have stated.
This is correct. This has nothing to do with Bluetooth connectivity. You can deny (and unless the app has a compelling reason to need this, you probably should.) and everything works fine. I’ve been on this beta for over a week now, denied every time and things work the same as they all have. You can always grant permission in settings later.

The Bluetooth can be used for tracking, but that doesn’t mean all the apps you are seeing now are bad actors, some probably use API’s that blanket ask for everything they are allowed to.
 

gwhizkids

macrumors 603
Jun 21, 2013
5,418
5,081
How about for Watch connections? If "no" on that, a bunch of apps are getting their BT permissions revoked!
 

iCarabma

macrumors 6502
Feb 22, 2012
290
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How about for Watch connections? If "no" on that, a bunch of apps are getting their BT permissions revoked!
Right, this doesn’t effect how anything connects with Bluetooth. Headphones (AirPods or otherwise), Stylus (Pencil, Crayon or otherwise), Apple Watch, PS4 or xbox controllers, etc all work the same way if you deny. This is about using the Bluetooth pings to extrapolate your location.
 

gwhizkids

macrumors 603
Jun 21, 2013
5,418
5,081
Right, this doesn’t effect how anything connects with Bluetooth. Headphones (AirPods or otherwise), Stylus (Pencil, Crayon or otherwise), Apple Watch, PS4 or xbox controllers, etc all work the same way if you deny. This is about using the Bluetooth pings to extrapolate your location.
No, apple pencil, audio devices, and other system features related to bluetooth will still work.
Thanks! I just went in and disabled anything I know has no explicit need for a bluetooth connection.
 
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jhfenton

macrumors 6502a
Dec 11, 2012
934
481
Cincinnati, Ohio
I’d try using both with access denied, it wouldn’t surprise me if the actual BT connection functions normally, and that it’s purely for tracking and data collection, as others have stated.
I'll try both and report back, but I'll be surprised if they work with it disabled. Both apps directly manage the Bluetooth connections. Neither my scale nor my Concept2 rower are paired with the phone in settings.

Edited to add: For the record, neither my Yunmai scale app nor my Concept2 ErgData app work with Bluetooth disabled. They both complain after launching, and neither can connect to their devices with it disabled. I turned it off for Waze, and it hasn't asked again or complained.

It appears that if iOS pairs and manages a Bluetooth device (e.g. Pencil, headphones, system-managed HR monitor), then an app using the device through iOS-provided functionality doesn't need Bluetooth permission. But if the app manages the connection directly, it does. For me, that's only two apps on my phone out of a few dozen that asked for permission.
 
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IowaLynn

macrumors 65816
Feb 22, 2015
1,306
288
Amazon shopping and Netflix on iPad and iPhone after installing iOS 13. I figured it wants to look for Alexa devices of which I have none and refuse to.
 
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