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The cell phone tracing tool will be rolled out nationwide four months later than planned


Which iPhones CANNOT use the NHS Covid app?

iPhone

iPhone 3G

Iphone 3 g s

iPhone 4

iPhone 4s

iPhone 5

IPhone 5c

iPhone 5s

iPhone 6

iPhone 6 Plus

Frustrated Brits complained to Twitter today that software for the NHS tracing app cannot be downloaded on iPhone 6 or older models – with the exception of thousands of people on the service.

Social media users shared attempts to download the app on their iPhone only to receive an error message stating that iOS 13.5 or later is required.

This operating system can only be used on the iPhone 6S and newer models – with the exception of handsets that are more than five years old.

The app, which was tested on the Isle of Wight before launching on the mainland, ran the same operating system, which means officials would have known it wouldn't work on older models.

Millions of Britons are being asked to download the mobile tracing app, which is finally rolling out nationwide today – four months late.

Health officials hope it will play a vital role in containing the virus at a critical point where cases pick up again.

But the app is likely to generate even more demand for tests when the labs are already under a lot of pressure and thousands of patients have failed to book slots.

The Department of Health will be launching a major TV ad campaign tonight to drive adoption by asking the public to "protect your loved ones get the app".

Officials hope that between 15 and 50 percent of the population in England and Wales will use it.

Scotland and Northern Ireland have already released their own versions.

A screenshot shows an attempt to download the app onto an iPhone 5C. A message appeared that the software is out of date

The app uses Bluetooth technology to alert users when they've come into contact with someone who tests positive for the virus

The app uses Bluetooth technology to alert users when they've come into contact with someone who tests positive for the virus

Health officials hope it will play a vital role in containing the virus at a critical point where cases pick up again. Pictured: a handout from the Ministry of Health

Health officials hope it will play a vital role in containing the virus at a critical point where cases pick up again. Pictured: a handout from the Ministry of Health

How does the contact tracking app work?

Bluetooth technology records which phones are within 2 meters of each other for 15 minutes and then alerts people if they have been around someone who later tested positive for Covid-19.

People's phones are only recognized by the system if they run the app themselves – others cannot be recognized.

The contacts it tracks are all anonymous and phones exchange digital "tokens" with any app-using phone within Bluetooth range.

If a person develops symptoms of the coronavirus or tests positive, they can enter that information into the app.

The phone then sends a notification to any devices they exchanged tokens with during the infection window to alert users that they may have been exposed to COVID-19.

Each phone keeps an individual log of the Bluetooth profiles that someone has come close to. These are then anonymously linked to the users' NHS apps and alerts can be sent even if the person is out of Bluetooth range.

People can delete their data from this app at any time.

Users also have an "isolation companion" with a countdown timer if someone needs to self-isolate and can "check in" using QR codes at places like pubs and restaurants.

Based on the first half of their zip code, they are also shown how high the risk is in their area, with locations classified as low, medium or high risk.

Will the app tell me what to do?

The app can only respond to data entered by people and only ever provides instructions. When a user reports that they have symptoms of a coronavirus – a new persistent cough, fever, or an altered sense of smell or taste – they will be prompted to self-isolate and get tested for 10 days from the onset of symptoms.

If at any time you test positive for Covid-19, you should report this to the app. The app will then send an anonymous alert to anyone that person has been within 6 & # 39; 7 & # 39; of 2 meters (15 minutes or more) since feeling sick.

That person may then be asked to self-isolate or get tested if they feel uncomfortable.

How well does it work

The app is far from perfect. The Ministry of Health has admitted that around half of those warned they were in the vicinity of an infected person have not been within the 2 m window of danger for 15 minutes.

And three in ten people at risk – 31 percent – receive no notification at all. In studies, it had an accuracy rate of 69 percent in detecting people at risk and an accuracy rate of 55 percent in detecting people who hadn't.

The app uses Bluetooth technology to alert users when they've come into contact with someone who tests positive for the virus, such as B. on public transport, in a shop, or with friends and family.

They will then receive a message asking them to self-isolate for 14 days and book a test, but only if they develop symptoms.

The device also allows users to check their symptoms online if they fear they might have the virus and book a test if needed.

Additionally, they will be asked to use their apps to scan the “QR code” in all pubs, restaurants and leisure centers they visit in the event that a virus outbreak is associated with that venue.

Your contact details are then available for tracking.

The app, using a system developed by Apple and Google, has been tested on the Isle of Wight and Newham, London.

The app was slated to launch in mid-May, but Health Secretary Matt Hancock had to ditch the technology after it didn't work on most smartphones.

Yesterday, Mr. Hancock said, “We are at a turning point in our efforts to control the spread of this virus.

& # 39; As infection rates increase, we must use every tool we can to prevent transmission, including the latest technology.

"Today's start is an important step forward in our fight against this invisible killer. I urge everyone to download and use the app to protect themselves and their loved ones."

Government officials don't set a target for the percentage of the population who want to download the app.

However, research at Oxford has shown that even if only 15 percent use it, it can significantly reduce the number of positive cases, hospital admissions and even deaths.

The Ministry of Health admits that the technology is still struggling to calculate accurate distances, which means that some users are mistakenly directed to self-isolate even if they have been more than six feet from an infected person.

Close contact is defined as being within six feet of someone for 15 minutes, but in early tests of the app, some people received notifications when they were four meters away.

Officials say that about 30 percent of people told to self-isolate may have been more than six feet from a positive case, but they emphasize the difference is small and the majority are likely still 2.1 or 2.2 meters away.

They insist that the technology is far more precise when compared to other apps used elsewhere in the world, although they admit that "more work could be done" to improve it.

Baroness Harding, Executive Director of the NHS Test and Trace Program, said: “We want to make it as easy as possible for everyone to get involved with the NHS UK Test and Trace Service. This is a welcome step in protecting our fellow human beings. & # 39;

Last night, Health Department officials admitted the app would put pressure on the country's testing services, but said capacity is increasing and demand from other members of the public is falling.

Last week, Boris Johnson had to admit the country ran out of tests after more and more people tried to book them, in part because children were going back to school and spreading insects.

To encourage the public to download the new version, emotional TV commercials will be broadcast tonight at 7pm featuring personal stories from families affected by the virus.

Professor Andrew Goddard, President of the Royal College of Physicians, said the app had to be "fit for purpose".

Google Maps now shows coronavirus outbreaks in your area using a color-coded layer to highlight the number of cases

Google Maps adds a new layer that allows users to update information about coronavirus outbreaks in a selected region.

The new feature follows other coronavirus-related updates to Maps, including information on overcrowding, COVID-19 transit warnings and travel restrictions.

Users tap the "Layers" button in the right corner of the map and click "COVID-19 Information".

An average of seven days of new infections per 100,000 people is shown, as is a label indicating whether cases are trending up or down.

A new layer in Google Maps allows users to view details of COVID-19 outbreaks in a specific region such as the Florida Heartland (seen here). Seven-day averages are shown along with a label indicating whether the number of infections is trending up or down

A new layer in Google Maps allows users to view details of COVID-19 outbreaks in a specific region like the Florida Heartland (seen here). Seven-day averages are displayed along with a label indicating whether the number of infections is trending up or down

Google Maps users can tap the "Layers" button in the right corner of a map and click "COVID-19 Information".

The function is available worldwide at the country level and, if available, for cities, states and municipalities

Google Maps users can tap the "Layers" button in the right corner of a map and click "COVID-19 Information". The function is available worldwide at the country level and, if available, for cities, states and municipalities

Google Maps COVID-19 shift for the central United States. The color coding indicates the density of new cases, from gray (zero cases) to dark red (more than 40 cases per 100,000 population).

Google Maps COVID-19 shift for the central United States. The color coding indicates the density of new cases, from gray (zero cases) to dark red (more than 40 cases per 100,000 population).

How is Apple and Google's technology different from the NHS project?

NHS app: lists on NHS servers

The NHSX app creates an alert every time two app users come within Bluetooth range of each other and logs it on the user's phone. Each person would essentially make a list of everyone they have been in contact with. This would be anonymized so that the lists were really just numbers or codes, not lists of names or addresses.

If someone was diagnosed with the coronavirus, any app users they came close to during the time they were classified as infectious would receive a notification that they were at risk of COVID-19 – but it didn't become that Named person who diagnosed it.

NHSX insisted that people's data would have been deleted if they removed the app, but not the data that would have been uploaded to the NHS server if they or a contact had tested positive.

Apple / Google: Included on phones

The Apple and Google decentralized approach removes the server and list element of this process and puts the entire log in someone else's phone. This app exchanges a digital "token" with any phone that is within Bluetooth range for a specified period of time.

If a person develops symptoms of the coronavirus or tests positive, they can enter that information into the app.

The phone then sends a notification to any devices they exchanged tokens with during the infection window to alert users that they may have been exposed to COVID-19.

The server database is not required as each phone keeps an individual log of the Bluetooth profiles that someone has come close to. These are then anonymously linked to the users' NHS apps and alerts can be sent even if the person is out of Bluetooth range. People can delete their data from this app at any time.

The color coding on maps indicates the density of new cases: gray indicates no cases in a particular region, with yellow representing 1-10 cases, orange 10-20, dark orange 20-30 cases, red 30-40 cases, and dark red more than 40 Cases per 100,000 population.

The COVID level will be rolled out globally for Android and iOS this week.

Trend data is visible at the country level for all 220 countries and territories supported by Google Maps, along with data at the country, county, and city levels when available.

According to Google, the numbers come from multiple sources – including Johns Hopkins, Wikipedia, and the New York Times – which in turn pull data from medical centers, state and local governments, and the World Health Organization.

"Many of these sources already provide COVID case information in Search, and we are now expanding that data to Google Maps," said Sujoy Banerjee, Google Maps product manager, in a blog post on Wednesday.

"We hope that these Google Maps features will get you where you want to be as safely and efficiently as possible."

In June, Google Maps began giving details about the public transport affected by the pandemic.

Driving warnings have also been added to inform drivers about COVID-19 checkpoints and restrictions on their route, including when crossing international borders.

Google Maps now also includes health facilities near users that support COVID-19 testing. A warning will remind users to review facility eligibility and policies to avoid being turned away or adding to the local healthcare system.

In some regions, users can also see which restaurants offer delivery and processing.

This month, Google partnered with Apple on contact tracking software over Bluetooth to alert people when they are in close proximity to someone diagnosed with COVID-19.

Users can use a unique PIN to decide whether to indicate they tested positive and keep their identity anonymous.

Google Maps addressed yet another national crisis this summer by adding a forest fire border map that provides a near-real-time overview of a fire a traveler may encounter, with instructions on breaking news and helpful information from local authorities.

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