Wednesday, August 26, 2020

Exposure Notifications Without an App

Chance Miller (also: MacRumors):

At the time, Google and Apple also teased “phase two” of the technology. This is what is being released as part of iOS 13.7, and it allows users to opt-in to COVID-19 Exposure Notifications without installing an app. In order to verify a positive case, however, you still will need an app from a public health authority to confirm a positive COVID-19 case.


Unfortunately, Apple says that the availability of COVID-19 Exposure Notifications will still depend on support from local public health authorities, even as the ability to opt-in is now built directly into iOS 13.7.


4 Comments RSS · Twitter

And blood oxygenation tracking built into the new upcoming Watch.

The new Tim Apple snitchWatch. Wow, I just convinced myself out of buying a new Tim Apple product.

@Leo Can’t you opt out of sharing health data if that bothers you?

Have there been any credible reports that this COVID tracking has significantly prevented any outbreaks?

>Have there been any credible reports that this COVID
>tracking has significantly prevented any outbreaks?

If you mean whether there is strong evidence that any of the contact tracing apps that are based on this type of API have had a significant impact on controlling the spread of the virus, then the answer is no. Ironically, due to the privacy-focused design of these APIs, it's impossible to know how many people have been alerted about a possible infection, and how many of these have subsequently tested positive.

I guess you could ask people who get tested whether they're doing it due to an alert from the app, and get some kind of data that way, but I'm not aware of anyone doing that.

Realistically, given the small install base of these apps, it's unlikely that they are having a big impact. They probably have a small effect on the reproduction number, which is good, but they're not one of the major factors affecting the spread.

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