Apple and Google Update Exposure Notification API, 20 U.S. States Expected to Release Apps Soon

Google today announced that the Exposure Notification API that it designed in partnership with Apple has received some improvements to make it more useful to public health authorities.

exposure notification cartoon
Most notably, the API supports interoperability between countries, and Bluetooth calibration has been improved. The full list of updates is below:

  • When an exposure is detected, public health authorities now have more flexibility in determining the level of risk associated with that exposure based on technical information from the API.
  • Bluetooth calibration values for hundreds of devices have been updated to improve the detection of nearby devices.
  • The API now supports interoperability between countries, following feedback from governments that have launched ‌Exposure Notification‌ apps.
  • To help public health authorities build apps more efficiently, we've added reliability improvements for apps and developer debug tools.
  • We've improved clarity, transparency and control for users. For example, the Exposure Notifications settings on Android now include a simple on/off toggle at the top of the page. In addition, users will also see a periodic reminder if ENS is turned on.

Google says it has also launched more technical guidance on how the ‌Exposure Notification‌ API works over the course of the last few weeks, and is providing more information on its Exposure Notifications website.

According to Google, 16 countries and regions across Africa, Asia, Europe, North America, and South America are using apps built with the ‌Exposure Notification‌ API, and 20 U.S. states are "exploring" apps with the first set to roll out "over the coming weeks."

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Top Rated Comments

iLoveDeveloping Avatar
51 months ago
Absolutely insane American government won’t implement this!!! It’s working really well here in Ireland! Getting 12-45 contacts a day in app (in settings) and no positives yet! Amazing little app! Just one question though do the devs need to update the api or will it work with the app right away? It’s insane in Ireland that it can’t be used in Northern Ireland because it’s in the UK. Same land but needs 2 apps that won’t work together it’s crazy, kinda like the states in America I guess. The level of stupidity in this is mind boggling.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Sasparilla Avatar
51 months ago

What is a US based app that is actually using this now we can adopt?
There is no U.S. app, literally the U.S. Federal Govt punted on this (along with virtually everything else so "its not someone's fault"). It's up to the governors and only 3 states I think said they'd use it (as far as I know nobody has one out - out of the 3 states). It's rather tragic but virtually nobody in the U.S. will be able to use this.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
DrRadon Avatar
51 months ago

The amount of data collected with this is staggering, but if it's not misused, the ability of this API is beyond amazing.

Here's to not abusing and misusing it ?
Check out how germany is doing it. The entire App is 100% open source. Super expensive to create and maintain apparently, but everyone can see all the code and hand in suggestions of how to do something better. It's a pretty amazing high level collaboration.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
JRobinsonJr Avatar
51 months ago
Maybe I'm missing something, but it sure seems to me that Apple/Google should be providing the front-end 'app' for users... then letting governments tie into the systems via API's or even Data-as-a-Service (DaaS).
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
CarlJ Avatar
51 months ago

The amount of data collected with this is staggering, but if it's not misused, the ability of this API is beyond amazing.

Here's to not abusing and misusing it ?
Please read the spec ('https://www.apple.com/covid19/contacttracing') (the FAQ ('https://covid19-static.cdn-apple.com/applications/covid19/current/static/contact-tracing/pdf/ExposureNotification-FAQv1.1.pdf') explains it quite well) and then list the ways in which the collected data could be misused - that is, the data that is actually collected, not something that you guess that it must be collecting.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
iLoveDeveloping Avatar
51 months ago

What makes you think it's working? You have no reason to believe that it does anything.

This is nothing but a huge time wasting proof of concept.
What makes me think it’s working. Am because over 105 people have had alerts to being close contacts already. The government release the figures that the app creates. So that’s how I know it’s working. The level of cynicism And distrust about all this is staggering - I would imagine your American? Or else think the government is spying on you? You probably don’t wear a face mask to protect OTHERS around you either am I right?
But hey, you won’t use an app made by Apple but you probably have an iPhone with location services on - this collects infinitely more information on you then this app ever would or could! What’s the point of making a comment like this. It’s helping people know if they’ve been in contact with an infected person it’s help in the fight against this horrible disease that’s killing thousands of people, get a life.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)