OAKLAND, California (Reuters) – North Dakota, Wyoming and Alabama are the latest US states to launch apps to warn users about possible exposure to a new coronavirus by tracking their encounters, State representatives told Reuters on Thursday.
FILE PHOTO: The Care19 mobile application, which the governors of North Dakota and South Dakota asked residents to download to assist with contact tracing during the global coronavirus outbreak (COVID-19), is seen seen on the phone, April 24, USA, 2020. REUTERS / Paresh Dave
Virginia last week became the first US state to call on people to download such an app using technology developed by smartphone software giants Apple Inc and Google’s Alphabet Inc.
About 316,000 people downloaded Virginia’s app, COVIDWISE, Jeff Stover, a state health department official, told Reuters during an online event on pandemic technology led by the Public Institute’s Responsible Data Organization. technology organized by Massachusetts.
North Dakota launched its app, Care19 Alert, on Thursday and Wyoming will release one on Friday, the company ProudCrowd for which the app has been developing, also said during the event.
Sue Feldman, director of the medical informatics graduate program at the University of Alabama in Birmingham, said Alabama, which has been testing its GuideSafe app for some students and university staff, has plans. start marketing it statewide on Monday.
Washington, recently tested its CommonCircle app at a hospital, and Pennsylvania is one of the other states to officially launch it in the coming weeks with Apple-Google technology.
This technology allows the phone to exchange Bluetooth signals to keep a list of intimate meetings anonymously. Infected users can anonymously notify recent contacts to be checked or quarantined.
But developers admit that they still face challenges in convincing users that the tracking and notification systems are private and trustworthy.
For example, for contact tracking apps from different states to communicate with each other, when users cross borders, has not been tested with North Dakota’s app is currently the first and only application in The United States supports that function.
North Dakota previously released an app, Care19 Diary, to help users remember their location history for contact tracking.
Reported by Paresh Dave; Edited by Tom Brown