While Apple and Google have already joined forces to assist track the spread of the coronavirus through smartphones through Exposure Notification System (ENS), it appears that next gadget that’s expected to play a task during this fight against the pandemic goes to be smartwatches.
Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG), the organisation that appears over at the development of Bluetooth standards, has announced that it’s collaborating with 130 companies to expand the reach of the smartphone exposure system to wearables.
“By extending an ENS to incorporate wearables, like wristbands, it can better address population groups where smartphone usage remains low, including children in primary school & older adults living in care facilities. An initial draft of the specification is predicted to be released and available for review within next few months,” said the organisation during a press statement.
At now , the small print of how the system will work is unknown as initial draft of the specification is predicted to be released and available for review within next few months. However, it’ll require users to connect it to a smartphone or internet connected proxy device, because it will periodically update the network and user about potential contacts.
“There are several population groups critical to managing the spread of diseases like COVID-19 with relatively low smartphone penetration, presenting a coverage challenge for smartphone-based Exposure Notification Systems,” said Elisa Resconi, a physics professor at the Technical University of Munich now leading research on non-pharmaceutical interventions against COVID-19. “We believe including wearable devices in an ENS would be a really effective method for extending its reach to support these important groups.”