What you need to know
- Germany has opted for a contact tracing app based on the Pan-European-Privacy Preserving Proximity Tracing's platform.
- The platform involves holding personal data of users on a centralized server.
- Apple has refused to allow such apps to use Bluetooth in the background because of privacy concerns.
Germany has opted to base its coronavirus contact tracing app on the centralized PEPP-PT platform, putting it at odds with Apple.
As reported by Reuters:
In the EU, governments want to use Bluetooth "handshakes" to measure the risk of infection, however, camps are split on the holding of data on a central server.
Germany has now backed a platform developed by PEPP-PT. That stands for Pan-European Privacy-Preserving Proximity Tracing, their app has been created by the Fraunhofer Heinrich Hertz Institute. As noted by Chancellor Merkel's spokesman:
The report notes however that Apple has "refused to allow such apps to monitory Bluetooth while running in the background", rendering them technically usefully, or highly ineffective. Apple and Google recently announced a joint contact tracing technology effort based on "device-based, decentralized apps." An opposition party member said that leaders were in talks with Apple "but so far no solution is in sight."
Recently, the EU's Thierry Breton called on Apple directly, saying it had "a responsibility to ensure contact tracing apps worked on its iOS platform. Clearly, none of these countries seem to be catching on to the fact that Apple will not support contact tracing apps that involve the extraction or storage of the personal data of its users.
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Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design.
Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9