Wiping Significant Locations from iOS' Intelligent Suggestions

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Wiping Significant Locations from iOS' Intelligent Suggestions

Silvia and I recently bought our first house in Rome (hence why I couldn’t go to WWDC this year and why my schedule has been all over the place for the past four months), and, as part of our move, we obviously ended up with a new address. In addition to all kinds of paperwork I needed to take care of, one of the first things I did after moving was changing my personal address in my own contact card in the Contacts app, which I assumed was going to be enough to “teach” iOS to never suggest the old address in mapping directions and other parts of the operating system. I was wrong.

For the past week or so, I’ve noticed that every time I got in the car and my iPhone connected to its Bluetooth system, I’d get a Maps notification telling me how long it’d take to drive home with current traffic conditions – except that “home” was set to the old address. I thought these alerts would go away in the span of a couple of days, but they didn’t, so I realized I had to take care of the issue myself. After doing a bit of thinking and research, I remembered that, regardless of which address you set for yourself in your contact card, iOS keeps an invisible log of significant locations you visit over time, which gets updated in the background without you having to do anything. These significant locations are meant to aid some of iOS’ intelligent features such as the aforementioned driving suggestions: by learning from your habits and patterns, iOS can send you a helpful notification at an appropriate time when it thinks you are, for example, about to drive home or commute to work.

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