Strange 40 MB “Software Update” appears in iPhone storage list

In iOS 15.x, on any given day, I started seeing a strange entry in the iPhone storage list that you can access from General Settings. The item is labeled “Software Update”, it’s 40 MB in size, the last used date is always “Today”, it persists even when I upgrade iOS to a new version, none of my other iPhones have this in the list, and when I drill into the entry to uninstall it, pressing “Uninstall Update” does nothing – the “update” refuses to uninstall.

See the attached screenshots…

I have now upgraded to iOS 16.1.2 and the “Software Update” is still there and refuses to uninstall.

-> Does anyone else see this on their phone?

This doesn’t seem ideal for a number of reasons

– I have disabled automatic downloads and automatic updates for both iOS and AppStore apps.

– I don’t see this on any of my other 3 iPhones. They all run the same version of iOS. Two of them are iPhone 8 Plus, which exactly matches the iPhone model on which this strange “update thing” appears.

– this “update” suddenly appeared one day about 12 months ago. I’m not sure, but I don’t believe it started appearing after I upgraded to a new version of iOS because out of curiosity I usually check the iPhone save list after every upgrade. It seems to have somehow appeared between iOS updates through a mechanism.

– When I zoom in on the “Software Update”, the “Uninstall Update” button appears. However, pressing that button will not remove the update. IF this was a valid “Software Update” the Uninstall button would absolutely work. There’s something very suspicious about this, I don’t think there’s any doubt about that at this point.

I’d really like to hear if anyone else is seeing this on their iPhone (or iPad)? Likewise, I’m interested in hearing thoughts on what this could be – what the feature is, how it’s installed, and if this is an official Apple update (or app) that’s on my phone; or if it is likely that the phone has indeed been compromised. I have a feeling it might be the latter.

Note that this is not a business/education managed iPhone, nor is my iCloud account a managed account, so that precludes any kind of custom business software app/update installed under an iOS configuration profile.

Thank you.