I have New York State’s exposure alerting app on my phone and check it every day. It gives me great statistics about what is going on in my location. You can download it here for iOS and Android.
It will also notify me if anyone who is using the app and has been with me gets Covid. I have not gotten any alerts in the month or two since I have had it on my phone. That’s great news and I have been healthy and that is good too.
But there is an issue with the uptake of this app in NYS. The last numbers I have heard suggest that less than 10% of NYS residents have installed this app on their phones. That compares with closer to 20% and rising in some other states.
Part of the reason other states are doing better getting their residents to install an exposure alerting app is they are promoting both their own app (like the NYS app) and also the “native” exposure alerting that became available in iOS 13.7 and soon will be available in Android.
I like having the full NYS app on my phone. But for those who would rather just flip a switch on their mobile phone, Express is the better option.
Because all of these apps and native operating system features run on top of Apple and Google’s Exposure Notification system (GAEN), all of these systems are interoperable with each other and you will be alerted if someone using any one of these services who you have been in contact with becomes infected.
Fighting this pandemic is hard. But we can make it a bit easier by doing a bunch of simple things, like wearing a mask, social distancing, getting tested regularly, and using an exposure alerting app or service.