"In the coming months", Apple and Google plan to do away with the need for dedicated apps and bake "a broader, Bluetooth-based contact tracing platform" into their operating systems directly. How does digital contact tracing work? Digital contact tracing uses radio transmitters inside smartphones to establish other phone owners the user's come into contact with - the same way that phones and other devices send out Bluetooth signals to seek devices to connect with. If person A and person B have a 10-minute conversation in the street, their phones will be exchanging anonymous identifier codes that change every 15 minutes. Person B's phone will have been checking the server for positive beacons from their past 14 days, meaning they'll receive a notification from the healthcare app letting them know someone they've been in contact with has tested positive for the virus and linking them to further information about symptoms, how to self-isolate etc. Why isn't the UK using Apple and Google's new coronavirus tracking app? How those without a job or on furlough can apply to pick fruit on farms.
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