Among the major tech companies, Apple is arguably the best when it comes to protecting user's privacy.

The company is about to roll out its new iPhone operating software and, among other things, it features a new icon that will show when the company is collecting your personal information.

The logo is of two people shaking hands but it also has a secondary, less obvious, image hiding in plain sight: a smiley face.

Perhaps Apple wants you to subconsciously feel at ease when it lets you know it's using your personal details?


When you install the iOS 11.3 update, you'll receive a new pop-up after your phone reboots.

"This icon appears when an Apple app or feature is asking to use your personal information," the message reads. It will pop up when accessing things like your connected health records via the new Health App feature, for instance.

"You won't see this icon with every feature since Apple only collects this information when it's needed to enable features, to secure our services, or to personalise your experience."

It goes on to reaffirm the fact that "Apple believes privacy is a fundamental human right."

The consumer tech giant sees its much vaunted commitment to user privacy as a competitive advantage over Google's Android.

For instance, unlike its rivals Amazon and Google, Apple's smart home speaker — due out next month — anonymises the data it records and sends to the cloud when you interact with it.

It's certainly not the first time a company has included a hidden subtext in its logo but for a company famous for the importance it places on design, the smiling face is a rather interesting choice.

According to Apple boss Tim Cook, the iOS 11.3 update will roll out next month.