The app privacy scandal caused by Path’s iPhone app is still leaving its mark, as members of the U.S. Congress have sent out letters to 33 prominent App Store developers to better understand the issue. “We want to better understand the information collection and use policies and practices of apps for Apple’s mobile devices with a social element.”
Apps like the official Facebook and Twitter clients are among the list. Energy and Commerce Committee Ranking Member Henry A. Waxman and Commerce, Manufacturing, and Trade Subcommittee Ranking Member G. K. Butterfield have requested that the developers behind such apps reveal how Apple imposes its privacy standards and how the standards are implemented.
Today’s iOS 5.1 beta 3 makes some interesting references to Siri’s Dictation feature. On both the iPod touch and iPad, a new Dictation text file has appeared under the keyboard settings window. This new document is not present in the same place on the iPhone 4S, suggesting that this reference does indeed foreshadow what’s to come.
The text file outlines iOS Dictation’s privacy details. While Siri Dictation is currently an iPhone 4S-only feature, it’s plausible to assume that Apple is working to bring the feature to other iOS devices.