UK debuts 'NHS COVID-19' app built with Apple-Google API

Posted:
in General Discussion
The UK National Health Service is rolling out its coronavirus contact tracing app based on the Exposure Notification framework created by Apple and Google.

Credit: The BBC
Credit: The BBC


As of Wednesday evening, the NHS COVID-19 app should be available to residents of Wales and England on the iOS App Store and the Google Play Store. Although originally slated to debut Thursday, the app appears to have gone live a bit early.

As with other Exposure Notification apps based on the Apple-Google API, the app will alert users if they come in close proximity to someone that has been diagnosed with COVID-19.

The system relies on short-range Bluetooth tracking and doesn't collect any location data or personally identifiable information. All data that is collected is stored in a decentralized manner on a user's device, per Apple and Google's rules.

Additionally, NHS COVID-19 has other features meant to aid in contact tracing, including the ability to scan QR codes to register visits to locations like restaurants or stores.

NHS officials initially rejected the Apple-Google contact tracing system because it stored data in a decentralized manner. After its proprietary system delivered poor results, the NHS backtracked on that decision and opted to work with the Apple and Google framework.

The UK's app joins a growing list of other digital contact tracing solutions in Europe and beyond, including in the U.S., Canada, Denmark, Switzerland, Latvia, Germany, and Poland.

The app will be available to users running iOS 13.5 or later and Android 6.0 or later, and is free to download and use. The iOS version can be found here, while the Android version is available here.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 8
    I’ve the Pennsylvania version. Easy enough to set up. 
  • Reply 2 of 8
    Er....NHS Scotland released its app last week and it has been downloaded over 1.1 million times. There’s no singular UK app...
  • Reply 3 of 8
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 6,957member
    Er....NHS Scotland released its app last week and it has been downloaded over 1.1 million times. There’s no singular UK app...
    This appears to be a different app. Scotland is pretty much going it’s own way. 
  • Reply 4 of 8
    crowleycrowley Posts: 10,363member
    This twitter thread sums up the key points quite well: 
  • Reply 5 of 8
    "Unfortunately, you can’t run this app
    This could be due to:
    A restriction your settings (for example, if this is a company phone).
    Another app on your phone is using the same technology and stopping this app from working."

    How do I get past this? Deleted. Rebooted. Re-downloaded. No other COVID apps (that I know of). iPhone X iOS14. NHS Covid-19 App:v3.6.

    What’s slightly odd is that in Settings -> NHS COVID-19 -> Exposure Notifications is a blank screen. No UI other than < Back. Do others see something here?

    Settings -> Exposure Notifications offers an option to Turn On Exposure Notifications, but that just shows a regional list and a link to download the app.

    edited September 2020
  • Reply 6 of 8
    It's got nothing to do with NHS England. It's provided by Serco who were given the contract by the Government with no tender process and has so far cost over £400million. I for one am reluctant to sign up to a service headed by Dido 'whoops I lost your TalkTalk personal data' Harding.
    kiltedgreen
  • Reply 7 of 8
    petripetri Posts: 106member
    Rayz2016 said:
    Er....NHS Scotland released its app last week and it has been downloaded over 1.1 million times. There’s no singular UK app...
    This appears to be a different app. Scotland is pretty much going it’s own way. 
    But they’re right to point out the headline of this article is wrong.  Scotland is part of the UK, therefore if the UK “debuted” any Covid app it happened last week in Scotland (although I think in fact Northern Ireland had one even before that).  All that happened today is that England and Wales launched their own app, finally.

    Spoken as an Englishman who wishes we were a more United and happier Kingdom than we are right now.
    edited September 2020
  • Reply 8 of 8
    Given that this thread ranks on google, I thought I post the cause of the problem and a potential solution:

    In iOS 13.5, Exposure Logging was accessed in Settings -> Privacy -> Health -> COVID-19 Exposure Logging:

    I disabled the above "Exposure Logging" option in iOS 13.5, but the option no longer appears within Health or anywhere else in iOS 14. Therefore all covid apps won’t work again.

    Resetting Location & privacy might fix it, but then you’d have to setup all these settings on all your apps again. No thanks. I’ll wait for Apple to fix the bug. iOS 14.0.1 doesn’t fix it.

Sign In or Register to comment.