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Apple & Google Release Exposure Notification Technology

Back in April, Apple and Google announced that they would be working together to create a contact tracing technology that would help detect whether or not users have come into contact with a COVID-19 confirmed case. The technology was able to launch ahead of schedule and is now available for public use.

The technology, called Exposure Notification, is a Bluetooth-based system that automatically tracks a device that has been near another device owned by a COVID-19-positive user. The user receives an automatic alert so he can get tested right away.

To preserve privacy, the system makes use of anonymous tokens that are frequently changed. In order to use the system, users have to install the official app launched by their local public health agency and agree to opt-in to the service. To make sure the information stays private and secure, Apple and Google are only allowing one app for every geographic region. They have also launched a number of safeguards to protect user privacy, one of which bans collecting user location.

Apple and Google have made the system available for public health agencies to start developing and releasing with their own apps. Unfortunately, not all governments plan to use this technology.

In addition to making the technology available to government health agencies, Apple has released its latest update iOS 13.5. This update comes with Exposure Notification and other features that address the ongoing health crisis. New Android versions will soon support the technology as well. The two companies are working to release a more comprehensive version of the technology, which won't require a new app to be installed but will remain opt-in.

To learn more about this technology, visit this page.


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