Apple had to clarify that iCloud Private Relay was not changed due to a dispute with mobile operators.
Some users had reported that the feature stopped working while on a cellular connection.
Introduced in iOS 15 and in beta as part of Apple’s iCloud+ subscription, Private Relay works similarly to a VPN.
The news comes after cellular operators urged regulators to get Apple to ban the feature because they’d be preventing them from accessing data.
“iCloud Private Relay is an innovative Internet privacy service that allows users with an iCloud+ subscription to connect to the Internet and browse Safari more securely and privately. We launched Private Relay in beta and it’s available in most countries around the world. No carrier partner has prevented their users from using Private Relay,” Apple told 9to5Mac.
“There were no changes made to iCloud Private Relay in iOS 15.2 that would have disabled the feature. Users are prompted to review their settings to determine if Private Relay is enabled on their device or for a specific network.”
Apple iCloud+ subscribers can turn on the feature in their iCloud settings menu and make sure “Limit IP address tracking” is turned on.
“Apple doesn’t change customers’ settings when they update to iOS 15.2. Customers may see an error message if they previously disabled iCloud Private Relay or Limit IP Address Tracking in their Cellular Data settings,” T-Mobile said in a statement after it claimed a bug in Apple’s software caused the feature to be disabled.
Apple also changed the wording for its iCloud Private Relay feature in the iOS 15.3 beta to clarify that it’s not due to a lack of carrier support.
Before the change, the message read, “Private relay is disabled on your cellular plan. Your cellular plan doesn’t support iCloud Private Relay. When iCloud Private Relay is disabled, this network can monitor your internet activity and your IP address is not hidden from known trackers or websites.”
However, as spotted by MacRumors, it now says, “Private relay is disabled on your cellular plan. Private Relay is either not supported by your cellular plan or has been disabled in cellular settings. When Private Relay is disabled, this network can monitor your internet activity and your IP address is not hidden from known trackers or websites.”