You know things are getting serious when two long-time rivals and competitors unanimously decide on a truce and unite to a common cause. In this case, Apple and Google have agreed to stop baring their fangs at each other and instead take a more daunting enemy, the novel Coronavirus.
In order to do this, both tech giants will be launching a comprehensive solution that includes APIs and OS-level technology to assist in the manner which the virus has been confirmed to spreads rapidly: human contact. The technology will be made in two tiers: the first step will be executed in May, where both companies will release the relevant APIs available that enables interoperability between Android and iOS devices. Using apps from approved public health authorities.
Contact tracing can help slow the spread of COVID-19 and can be done without compromising user privacy. We’re working with @sundarpichai & @Google to help health officials harness Bluetooth technology in a way that also respects transparency & consent. https://t.co/94XlbmaGZV
— Tim Cook (@tim_cook) April 10, 2020
Once said APIs are in place, Apple and Google will then work on building a wider Bluetooth-enabled contact tracing platform and functionality. Over the following months. Above all else, the two brands assure that privacy, transparency, and consent will always be a top priority, even while developing these parameters.
Speaking of which, both Apple and Google are effectively putting a call-to-arms to any and all developers and interested shareholders who are interested in toeing the line. And in being a part of a solution towards the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
On that note, both brands have released the technical documentation for Bluetooth and cryptography specifications and framework documentation for the contact tracing initiative, to which you can find here.