Soon every IPhone and Android will track your contacts. Apple and Google have designed a system for our phones to “connect” when they are near each other. If you are near another person, your phones will contact each other and log the connection.
Introduced in two phases, Phase One will require the user to download an app and give permission for tracking. Phase Two will be installed into every phone operating system, and automatically activated.
Phase One has been completed, and the application programming interfaces (APIs) released for use by public health apps. Several companies are currently working to develop the apps. Virginia health officials have been talking about apps and “other possible technological solutions” for contact tracing, according to emails obtained by The Virginian-Pilot through the Freedom of Information Act.
Phase Two will be installed into phones operating systems in May. Apple has Contact Tracing built into the upcoming system update # 13.5. Android devices will not require a full system update; the new feature will be enabled on phones running Android 6.0 or later, and through Google Play on older phones.
Here is how the system works, according to the FAQ provided by Apple and Google:
In Virginia, Alice will have to isolate, or be quarantined, for 14 days
even if she tests negative for Covid-19.
Two important points for now:
- If you do not want the contract tracing capability activated on our phone, you can disable the feature in System Settings as pictured.
- The system is designed only to track contacts by phone, not using location services
My IPhone is currently on 13.4 OS and I will be checking every update!