Aiming to help countries and health institutions to more accurately track the advancement of COVID-19 by the population, Apple and Google have teamed up to develop Exposure Notifications, an API for Android and iOS that uses anonymous Bluetooth logs issued by users’ phones to help in the identification of possible contaminants.
Smartphones registered to work with the novelty are in constant use with other nearby devices, thus allowing those who had contact with infected to be notified promptly. Location data is not collected in the process and the identifiers are stored locally, without any contact with external servers.
However, as it is linked to health organizations in countries, the system requires a dedicated app to work, something that is not implemented everywhere. Therefore, the Cupertino giant started to allow users to subscribe to Exposure Notifications without the need to have a healthcare network application installed through the iOS and iPadOS 13.7 update.
The update, which for the time being seems to be only available to beta users, also corrects some flaws not disclosed by Apple. The update also arrives as a second major fix for iOS 13, which had already reached its final stage with version 13.6, but received major fixes with iOS 13.6.1.