Apple iPhone owners are urged by Apple to update their phone as soon as possible to avoid serious problems with their GPS software. . The update is needed to address a problem called the GPS Time Rollover Issue – a problem with the dates used in the GPS global positioning service. GPS is powered by a system which counts weeks using binary numbers. When it reaches the end of week number 1023, it has to be reset back to zero rather than beginning week number 1024. This ‘roll over’ happens every 19.7 years. The first took place in 1999 and the second on the night between April 6 and April 7, 2019.
Apple’s iOS update incorporates a time reset. Without it, services which rely on accurate date and time will no longer function. Apple wrote: ‘Update your iPhone 5 to continue using App Store, iCloud, email, web, and other services ‘Starting just before 12:00 a.m. UTC on November 3, 2019, iPhone 5 will require an iOS update to maintain accurate GPS location and to continue to use functions that rely on correct date and time including App Store, iCloud, email, and web browsing. ‘This is due to the GPS time rollover issue that began affecting GPS-enabled products from other manufacturers on April 6, 2019. Affected Apple devices are not impacted until just before 12:00 a.m. UTC on November 3, 2019. ‘It’s always a good idea to keep the operating system on your iPhone updated. If you have an iPhone 5, it’s especially important to update your device’s software wirelessly or using your computer before November 3 to maintain accurate GPS location and to continue to use functions that rely on correct date and time including App Store, iCloud, email, and web browsing.’ You need to be quick to install the update, because it will soon get harder to access Apple’s update services. ‘If the update to iPhone 5 is not completed by November 3, 2019, you will be required to back up and restore using a Mac or PC in order to update because over-the-air software updates and iCloud Backup will not work.