Work can now begin for third-party developers to implement Covid-19 contact tracking technology, jointly developed by Google and Apple, or, as companies call it, an “exposure notification system,” bringing a universal platform one step closer.
On April 10, the two companies announced their intention to work together to develop a contact tracking protocol that could be used as widely as possible by national health authorities in their own applications. basis. Supporting the two companies is believed to be the only way for contact tracking apps to appear on the smartphones of as many users as possible, making it easier for healthcare agencies to curb the spread of the infection.
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The basis of the system is that smartphones at subscribers use Bluetooth technology to track who the owner has been in contact with for the past 14 days and for how long (but not where), and then if anyone is found to be coronary virus, alert sends the system to all potential infected. In the solution of Google and Apple, the collected data is stored on the devices, and the servers of the two companies perform a transfer task.
to handle sensitive user data, in response to which Apple and Google have stated that they are taking steps that are likely to allay a significant portion of their concerns to ensure that the rights of neither sick nor healthy people are violated in any way when using the platform. Thus, among other things, they strengthen the encryption of communications, with special emphasis on hiding all information that makes users' devices identifiable, including ultimately the users themselves.
Preparations for apps may begin after Wednesday's release of the development environment. so far, by the way, a total of 23 countries have indicated interest in a joint contact tracking platform between Google and Apple. However, it may take months for apps to appear, not least because about two billion smartphones will need to update software globally to work properly.
Gellert is Technology Editor at Counting News Media and contributor at other major tech publications. Her interests includes testing new gadgets and reading.