Apple has released a statement responding to the fact that traces of Carrier IQ have been found on iOS devices, including the iPhone.

The company makes no secret of its former inclusion of the usage tracking software, but claims it stopped supporting it in iOS 5.

Currently the only iOS 5 device to continue supporting Carrier IQ is the iPhone 4, so all iOS 5-running iPads, iPod Touches and iPhone 4S handsets have had the software removed.

"We stopped supporting Carrier IQ with iOS 5 in most of our products, and we're going to remove it completely in a future software update," the Apple statement says.

What the what?

But why was it there in the first place?

"It was just for diagnostic data that was sent to Apple, and customers had to actively opt in to that to even provide us that level of information," Apple explained.

"If they opted in, that data was sent anonymously, and in encrypted fashion. We did not record keystrokes, messages or any personal information for the diagnostic data, and we have no plans to in the future."

Carrier IQ has come under scrutiny in the last few days after a video emerged showing that it was capable of logging every action on a phone, down to individual key strokes.

Since then, manufacturers and mobile phone networks have been quick to deny using the software, despite it being installed on over 140 million devices around the world.

From Ars Technica