More than 25 million downloads, around 23 million users: nine months after the start of the Corona Warning app, it is only installed on four out of ten smartphones. Some people don’t want to use them, others can’t. So far, the app only ran on modern cell phones. Anyone who owns an old iPhone was excluded.
That changes now with version 1.12. The developers at Deutsche Telekom and SAP have released an update that makes the app compatible with the iPhone 5s, iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. There are around one and a half to two million such devices in Germany. However, it is unclear how many of them are actively used. Some of the iPhones are probably just in the drawer. Nevertheless, several hundred thousand people should now have the opportunity to install the app for the first time.
For a long time Apple only made the required contact tracing interface available for iPhones running at least iOS 13.5. Devices with iOS 12.5 or 12.5.1 have also been supported since December. With the current update, the developers of the Corona app have integrated the new interface.
There is only one small restriction: Newer iOS versions update the risk calculation in the background up to six times a day. This only happens twice on iOS 12.5. But that doesn’t change anything in terms of functionality or reliability. Under certain circumstances, the warning of a risky contact comes only a few hours later. Users can also initiate the synchronization manually when they open the app in a WiFi network.
New function shows date of risk contacts
The update to version 1.12 brings another new function with it. The contact diary is expanded to include an encounter history. Anyone who has had multiple risk encounters will now see the date of each individual contact with an infected person. If you use the manual contact diary and make a note of when you met whom, you could also see who you met on the day of the risk contact.
However, it is important not to draw false conclusions from this. “The contact diary serves as a private memory aid and runs independently of the contact tracing system of the Corona warning app,” write the developers. You have to distinguish between the personal entries in the contact diary and the app system. “A risk encounter may or may not have taken place in a place entered in the diary or with a person entered.”
Version 1.12 will be rolled out gradually over two days in the Apple and Google app stores from this Wednesday. If you have an iPhone, you can already download the update manually. People with Android smartphones will have to wait for Google to make the update available.