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Will you install the NHS COVID-19 track and trace app on your Smartphone?

Tempest

Distinguished Member
Was spoken about more at today's evening briefing, so I'm wondering.
Would you be happy to install whatever Official App this ends up being on your smartphone, to enable you to be notified if you had been in close proximity to someone for a while, who has since developed to the virus?
Or are you too worried that such an app may be tracking your location all the time to want to have this on your phone.
As far as I'm aware it's not a location tracker, it's just a proximity tracker to another persons phone.
Personally I'm not worried as I have tracking on for Google all the time anyway, but I know some are very paranoid about this stuff.

What will you do?

The iOS app is here:
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Tempest

Distinguished Member
Install it if it helps, not to bothered who knows my location
Of course the more people have the app, the more valuable and helpful the data will be.

Perhaps the Selling Point, if you will, will be that, it will tell YOU if you have been around someone infected, so it may then enable you to be tested (if tests are out by then) which could also benefit your family thanks to the info.

I guess that's how it will be promoted, as a health benefit to you the end user
 

richp007

Distinguished Member
I don't think anyone needs to be worried about this app and it's privacy implications.

Or they're gonna need to think about deleting every app they've got.
 

Pugs1

Member
Unless they write an app for Windows Phone, then nope🤣
 

gavinhanly

Distinguished Member
I don't think anyone needs to be worried about this app and it's privacy implications.

Or they're gonna need to think about deleting every app they've got.
Absolutely. I think my propensity to agree to whatever terms and conditions come my way means I've probably sold my soul to the devil somewhere in the past few years without realising.

That said - @IronGiant, can we add a poll? If @Tempest is OK with that?
 

IronGiant

Moderator
Fine by me, suggest options.

although I was called stupid for suggesting a poll in another thread ;)
 

Tempest

Distinguished Member
Absolutely. I think my propensity to agree to whatever terms and conditions come my way means I've probably sold my soul to the devil somewhere in the past few years without realising.

That said - @IronGiant, can we add a poll? If @Tempest is OK with that?
Yeah, sure, if IronGiant can make this a poll, this would be great.
The app will be coming without question, so be interesting to see the general feelings about this.
 

Tempest

Distinguished Member
Fine by me, suggest options.

although I was called stupid for suggesting a poll in another thread ;)
I guess it would be something like:

Yes (Android User)
Yes (iPhone User)
No (Android User)
No (iPhone User)
Maybe but need to know more about privacy
Maybe but depends who makes/runs the app.

Anything else you can think of?
 

gavinhanly

Distinguished Member
I guess it would be something like:

Yes (Android User)
Yes (iPhone User)
No (Android User)
No (iPhone User)
Maybe but need to know more about privacy
Maybe but depends who makes/runs the app.

Anything else you can think of?
I think keep it as simple as possible - that should be fine. People can explain reasons more in the thread.
 

stblob

Well-known Member
So how would it work? If I have coronovirus would I have to tell the app that I'm a danger?
So I could have the app and just not update it!
 

Pugs1

Member
Fine by me, suggest options.

although I was called stupid for suggesting a poll in another thread ;)
That's being stupid suggesting a poll 😂😂😂😂👍
 

lee667

Well-known Member
I'm not sure if i'd install the app. Not bothered about privacy but would need to know a bit more about the parameters used. For example, if i pop to the shop is it going to flag if someone in the shop comes down with it, or will it be more specific and only ping if that person was only a 2/3/4 metres away from me?

Also, where I work we can't have our phones on us. We're supposed to keep them in lockers plus the signal is non existent in the majority of the workplace. We have over 3000 people working on site so if people get it there's a good chance that persons phone was either switched off, or had no signal to enable to app to track.
 

Miss Mandy

Moderator
I'm not sure if i'd install the app. Not bothered about privacy but would need to know a bit more about the parameters used. For example, if i pop to the shop is it going to flag if someone in the shop comes down with it, or will it be more specific and only ping if that person was only a 2/3/4 metres away from me?

Also, where I work we can't have our phones on us. We're supposed to keep them in lockers plus the signal is non existent in the majority of the workplace. We have over 3000 people working on site so if people get it there's a good chance that persons phone was either switched off, or had no signal to enable to app to track.
The one I read about was contact tracing not location tracing. It shares data between devices that are in range of each other so it would only ping if you had been near that person in the time period they were contagious. If you and Bob happened to be at the supermarket at the same time, but didn't get close enough for your phone's to share keys then you wouldn't get pinged if he then tested positive.
 

Philly112

Distinguished Member
It's probably going to work via bluetooth. I presume the more it's used, the more effective it will become. So it should be able to show which areas are growing and shrinking in infection rates, along with enabling more effective self isolation.
Note it's not a magic bullet. It's a tool to help in keeping the rate of infection manageable and to enable testing to be used more efficiently. That's all it is really. In an ideal world we'd all have a simple self test we could do every day to see if we were infected. This just tries to bridge the (considerable) gap between that ideal, and the amount of testing we're actually able to do. We'll still need far more than 100,000 tests a day to manage this process.
 

weaviemx5

Distinguished Member
I'm not sure if i'd install the app. Not bothered about privacy but would need to know a bit more about the parameters used. For example, if i pop to the shop is it going to flag if someone in the shop comes down with it, or will it be more specific and only ping if that person was only a 2/3/4 metres away from me?

Also, where I work we can't have our phones on us. We're supposed to keep them in lockers plus the signal is non existent in the majority of the workplace. We have over 3000 people working on site so if people get it there's a good chance that persons phone was either switched off, or had no signal to enable to app to track.
As per the post above, the app will use BLE (Bluetooth), so you could have mobile data and Wi-Fi switched off 24x7 and it would still function.

As BLE has a short range, the app will only register other devices within that range, hence you’ve been close enough to risk being infected. I think it’s a good way to contact trace, and rules out the idea of big brother watching as BLE doesn’t track your actual geographical location.

It does rely on the user uploading their last 14 days of interaction in the event of a positive test, so there’s an expectation of honesty/remembering. I would expect the app to run a daily alert, like the current Covid-19 tracker app, to remind people.
 

Rog69

Distinguished Member
I think that any privacy concerns could easily be eliminated if they make the code for the app freely available for independent scrutiny, this would be a big help in getting people on board with it. I don't see any reason why they wouldn't do this, after all, if they are not doing anything wrong then they have nothing to hide.
 

Violator

Well-known Member
First I've heard of this (I do have another C19 app but that's more for reporting symptoms) and I wouldn't have a problem running this.

Not like it's going to alert everyone to their stash of goat-porn :)
 

Sloppy Bob

Member
I'll need to disable it when I go to work. I've had to reappraise my business model.

Previous position - An international diamond thief and cat burglar.

International - No flights.
Diamonds - No one has any money, not much of a market for them,
Cat burglar - Cats are pretty cheap and lonely people need a companion.

So, I'm now stealing cats on a purely local level along my running route now. No dodgy government "spy on you" apps for me.
 

Lee

Moderator
I would need to get a phone that has apps and will do if it the technology is proven to work in controlling the virus.
 

Ste7en

Distinguished Member
I have no problem installing it. Mind, I don't think it should be an opt-in thing, it should be compulsory or tucked in to the OS as a 'system update'.
 
Totally depends. Who makes it, who distributes it, what data do they collect, what are the terms and conditions, what impact does it have on battery etc.

Normal due diligence applies. The last Government app was totally sh*t and didn’t even work on iOS.
 

GadgetObsessed

Well-known Member
As long as the app works as originally promised I.e. based on swapping keys with nearby phones and not location tracking, then i have no issue with installing the app.

However people should be aware that it will generate a huge amount of false positive warnings that you have come into contact with someone with Covid19.

This is simply because Bluetooth Low Energy has no idea how far away the person it swapped keys with was. BLE has a theoretical range of up to 100m but a practical range that is much less. I use BLE to connect my phone to my hearing aids and that seems to work up to about 10m. It also goes through walls but not very far.

This means that your phone will happily swap keys with someone in the next room or on the other side of a window e.g. they are in a shop or in a car while you are walking past outside and your phones swap keys.

I also have not seen any description of how long you have to be close to someone for the app to swap keys. For example does the app ping nearby devices every 60 seconds and only record the key if it is present on two consecutive pings or does the app simply record every key it comes into contact with even if only for one ping.

When I first saw the app the description said that only a medic could trigger contract tracing after you had a positive test. However I have since seen comments from ministers that people could self diagnose. That would be a nightmare - imagine someone simply having a temperature or a cough and diagnosing themselves as having Covid and then triggering an alert to every phone that their phone has been within 10m of in the past 14 days.

If this is the case I would expect anyone who has been out at all to end up getting multiple alerts every day.
 

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