One of the ways Coronavirus gets transmitted is via close contact between individuals. In other to combat the spread of the virus, Google and Apple are partnering “to enable the use of Bluetooth technology to help governments and health agencies reduce the spread of the virus, with user privacy and security central to the design.”
This system will be built into the Android and iOS smartphone. Contract tracing has been identified as a valuable tool to stop the spread of the virus by health officials and Google and Apple “will be launching a comprehensive solution that includes application programming interfaces (APIs) and operating system-level technology to assist in enabling contact tracing.”
Whilst maintaining user’s privacy and security, the two companies plan to implement the tracking system in two ways. In May, Google and Apple will “release APIs that enable interoperability between Android and iOS devices using apps from public health authorities.” This will be released as an app which will be available to download on Google Play and the App Store.
The second method involves Bluetooth technology. The two companies intend to work together to “enable a broader Bluetooth-based contact tracing platform by building this functionality into the underlying platforms.” This offers more flexibility than the API option and individuals can decide whether to opt-in or not.
The tech giants further assure privacy, transparent will be maintained and intend to publish more information as this unfolds for people to analyze.