MoviePass removes 'unused' location capability in update

Posted:
in iPhone edited March 8
After MoviePass CEO Mitch Lowe raised the hackles of privacy advocates by implying the movie deals service tracks user locations, the company on Wednesday issued an update for its eponymous app that removes a supposedly unused "location capability" feature.

MoviePass iOS app


According to its release notes, version 3.0.6 of MoviePass for iOS delivers theater and movie search performance improvements. More importantly, the update also removes an "unused app location capability."

While the release notes fail to go into further detail, the location capability is thought to be a function Lowe alluded to in a recent presentation at the Entertainment Finance Forum. During his talk "Data is the New Oil: How will MoviePass Monetize It?" last week, the CEO said MoviePass gleans user location data and is thinking of ways to leverage that information to enhance its service.

"We get an enormous amount of information," Lowe said at the time. "We watch how you drive from home to the movies. We watch where you go afterwards."

That information is not conveyed to MoviePass users in the company's privacy policy, which notes the app requires access to a user's location when selecting a theater. Location data is gathered in a "single request" that might also be used to "develop, improve and personalize the service," the company says.

Following public backlash, MoviePass on Monday attempted to clarify the situation by saying it is "exploring utilizing location-based marketing" to enhance the moviegoing experience for subscribers. For example, a user's location might be used to suggest nearby restaurants or advertise exclusive benefits like discounts on transportation.

To further sate privacy advocates, MoviePass appears to have put the exploratory tracking capability on ice, at least for now.

The app is unlikely to remove all location-based assets, like the nearby theater function, as they present a significant benefit to customers and underpin certain MoviePass features. Wary iOS users can limit software access to onboard positioning hardware in the Settings app under Privacy > Location Services.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 9
    magman1979magman1979 Posts: 1,052member
    Only a complete and utter FOOL would believe one word out of this scumbag's mouth after that little creepy speech he gave the other day!
    lollivertmayold-wiz
  • Reply 2 of 9
    SoliSoli Posts: 8,292member
    Only a complete and utter FOOL would believe one word out of this scumbag's mouth after that little creepy speech he gave the other day!
    You mean the one where he point blank stated that they analyze your location data before and after a movie for monetary purposes? That "speech"? So what you're saying is you don't don't believe him today… because his previous statement was a statement you believed? How does that make sense?

    Do you also think that the company is in cahoots with Apple so that the OS level controls for location that are set to "only when using app" are somehow being used all the time?
    edited March 8 jbdragon
  • Reply 3 of 9
    LatkoLatko Posts: 123member
    Ooohhh, Mitch thank you for monitoring where I keep my hands during those titillating movies - so I don't have to do it myself
  • Reply 4 of 9
    I always set my apps to use location only when using the App. I really don't see how they would have constantly been gathering user location to see what we were doing if that is turned on (yes, I force close apps when I'm done using them).
    jbdragon
  • Reply 5 of 9
    old-wizold-wiz Posts: 194member
    And perhaps they will soon inform the police if you go to see a "pornographic" movie?  Will they turn informer? No way I would buy that app.
  • Reply 6 of 9
    jbdragonjbdragon Posts: 1,870member
    I always set my apps to use location only when using the App. I really don't see how they would have constantly been gathering user location to see what we were doing if that is turned on (yes, I force close apps when I'm done using them).


    I do the same thing. So this really has been a non-issue. I don't see what the big deal is anyway. Google does far, far worse!!!

    I normally look on Fandango for what movie I want to see. Than go to the theater, start the MoviePass app, find the movie and time and pick it to activate my card. Once that's done, I KILL the app. So it didn't track me anywhere at anytime. MoviePass already knows where I am from the ticket I bought using their Credit Credit Card. So the know where I'm at from the theater and what movie I watched and at what time and day. I've killed the app, so it can't track me when I leave.

    Besides I had the app set to only track when the App was running. When it's in the background as you have something else on screen, it's not tracking you anymore. Anything that still is, which is usually Navigation apps, iOS11 throws up a blue bar on the top of the screen to let you know!!!!

    So again, whats the big deal? The only big deal is the huge SAVINGS!!!! You pay $9.95 a month and can see unlimited 2D movies. No 3D or IMAX. 1 Movie Ticket is generally at least $10. Say the first showing of the day before prices go up $12-$15. But say you see 8 movies a months. That's 2 a week. With MoviePass you tend to see a lot of movies!!!! At a low price of $10 a movie, that's $80. You're basically saving $70!!! Seeing 1 movie a month pays for the service.

    Remember, it wasn't all that long ago where it was costing me $35 a month, and then prices went up and it was costing me $45 a month. Which is still a 50% savings. At $9.95 a month, it's a steal. Why wouldn't you sign up at this point?!?! How they can afford to do this?!?! Because they are paying the FULL PRICE of the tickets. They don't get any kind of discount.
    MustSeeUHDTV
  • Reply 7 of 9
    jbdragon said:
    I always set my apps to use location only when using the App. I really don't see how they would have constantly been gathering user location to see what we were doing if that is turned on (yes, I force close apps when I'm done using them).


    I do the same thing. So this really has been a non-issue. I don't see what the big deal is anyway. Google does far, far worse!!!

    I normally look on Fandango for what movie I want to see. Than go to the theater, start the MoviePass app, find the movie and time and pick it to activate my card. Once that's done, I KILL the app. So it didn't track me anywhere at anytime. MoviePass already knows where I am from the ticket I bought using their Credit Credit Card. So the know where I'm at from the theater and what movie I watched and at what time and day. I've killed the app, so it can't track me when I leave.

    Besides I had the app set to only track when the App was running. When it's in the background as you have something else on screen, it's not tracking you anymore. Anything that still is, which is usually Navigation apps, iOS11 throws up a blue bar on the top of the screen to let you know!!!!

    So again, whats the big deal? The only big deal is the huge SAVINGS!!!! You pay $9.95 a month and can see unlimited 2D movies. No 3D or IMAX. 1 Movie Ticket is generally at least $10. Say the first showing of the day before prices go up $12-$15. But say you see 8 movies a months. That's 2 a week. With MoviePass you tend to see a lot of movies!!!! At a low price of $10 a movie, that's $80. You're basically saving $70!!! Seeing 1 movie a month pays for the service.

    Remember, it wasn't all that long ago where it was costing me $35 a month, and then prices went up and it was costing me $45 a month. Which is still a 50% savings. At $9.95 a month, it's a steal. Why wouldn't you sign up at this point?!?! How they can afford to do this?!?! Because they are paying the FULL PRICE of the tickets. They don't get any kind of discount.
    Don't forget that you can rack up Regal or AMC rewards too. Though AMC is really being sneaking about activating a person's at the ticket booth or concession stands. Now I just use the Kiosk to buy tickets and when I can use the App to buy concessions.
  • Reply 8 of 9
    SoliSoli Posts: 8,292member
    jbdragon said:
    I always set my apps to use location only when using the App. I really don't see how they would have constantly been gathering user location to see what we were doing if that is turned on (yes, I force close apps when I'm done using them).
    I do the same thing. So this really has been a non-issue. I don't see what the big deal is anyway. Google does far, far worse!!!

    I normally look on Fandango for what movie I want to see. Than go to the theater, start the MoviePass app, find the movie and time and pick it to activate my card. Once that's done, I KILL the app. So it didn't track me anywhere at anytime. MoviePass already knows where I am from the ticket I bought using their Credit Credit Card. So the know where I'm at from the theater and what movie I watched and at what time and day. I've killed the app, so it can't track me when I leave.

    Besides I had the app set to only track when the App was running. When it's in the background as you have something else on screen, it's not tracking you anymore. Anything that still is, which is usually Navigation apps, iOS11 throws up a blue bar on the top of the screen to let you know!!!!

    So again, whats the big deal? The only big deal is the huge SAVINGS!!!! You pay $9.95 a month and can see unlimited 2D movies. No 3D or IMAX. 1 Movie Ticket is generally at least $10. Say the first showing of the day before prices go up $12-$15. But say you see 8 movies a months. That's 2 a week. With MoviePass you tend to see a lot of movies!!!! At a low price of $10 a movie, that's $80. You're basically saving $70!!! Seeing 1 movie a month pays for the service.

    Remember, it wasn't all that long ago where it was costing me $35 a month, and then prices went up and it was costing me $45 a month. Which is still a 50% savings. At $9.95 a month, it's a steal. Why wouldn't you sign up at this point?!?! How they can afford to do this?!?! Because they are paying the FULL PRICE of the tickets. They don't get any kind of discount.
    Don't forget that you can rack up Regal or AMC rewards too. Though AMC is really being sneaking about activating a person's at the ticket booth or concession stands. Now I just use the Kiosk to buy tickets and when I can use the App to buy concessions.
    Which is horrible customer service. For some reason AMC is trying to treat MoviePass as a special pass. Since AMC is still getting full prices for tickets customers should get the rewards for going to their theaters.
    MustSeeUHDTV
  • Reply 9 of 9
    riemersriemers Posts: 1member
    One problem with this new update has not been mentioned yet.  I do MoviePass on my Apple IPad.  It has worked out great for me for months and that is what encouraged me to go for the one year plan.  Today I went to the movie and after clicking the ckeck-in bar I got rejected and a message I "must update my app."   Well.  So much for a relaxing movie tonight.  I was finally able to get a hold of Movie Pass.  The problem?  They updated their software and now Apple IPad is considered a "non-compliant device".   So, while I can still run the software and look at what is playing on my local theater,  which is useful,  I can no longer get the tickets I have pre-paid for.  And of course,  NO  REFUNDS  for this drastic change.  So, do I spend a wad of dough for a new Smart Phone,  which in the future my be declared also "non-compliant" or do I just go back to the old way of paying for my own tickets?
    Any suggestions anyone?
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