Researcher Douglas Leith from Trinity College in Ireland studied and measured the amount of data sent by smartphones running Android and iOS when the user believes that the gadget is idle. In reality, it turned out that the collection of statistics and telemetry never stops, the only difference is in the amount of information that devices with different operating systems send to the servers of their companies. According to Leith, Android has 20 times more of this traffic than iOS.
An important point – data is collected and sent even if the user has expressly prohibited the collection of confidential information. While the smartphone is idle on the table, it transmits information to its internal server on average every 4.5 minutes, plus all common applications and services do this, primarily those owned by Google and Apple themselves. Developers will learn about every login, in the settings menu, in the app store, to check the location, to connect the memory card, SIM card, or switch to standby mode.
Leith measured that Android sends about 1 MB of data to Google when unlocking a smartphone, while iOS sends 42 KB to Apple. In standby mode, the green robot collects 1 MB every 12 hours, and the Apple OS collects 52 KB. This leads to the fact that in the United States, for example, Android smartphones send a total of 2.6 TB per day, while iOS gadgets are 5.8 GB.
The most interesting thing is that neither Google nor Apple denied this fact, but they emphasized that the researcher chose the wrong assessment method and in reality the amount of data collected is less. However, they did not specify them. It should be noted here that IT giants do not consider device telemetry as personal user information, and therefore dispose of it at their own discretion. The official reason is the need to constantly, in real time, monitor the performance of each smartphone in order to timely prepare updates and fixes OS.