Twente to begin trials of the coronavirus app in July
A sample group of people in Twente are going to start testing the government’s new coronavirus app from July 1.
Some residents of the region of Twente will have access to the app to test whether it meets all requirements in terms of privacy, user-friendliness, and security.
The aim of the trial is to improve the test version of the app before it becomes available to the general public. Organised in collaboration with various organisations in the area, a selection of several hundred people will be given the opportunity to install it on their phone and gain experience with the app in their own environment for one week.
By the end of the testing period, the research gathered should indicate whether the app is easy to install, whether the texts and functions are easy to follow, and how the app can be improved before it goes live.
The test was announced in a letter from Health Minister Hugo de Jonge to the House of Representatives (Tweede Kamer) after he announced yesterday that the app was almost ready to launch. He said the app can play an important role in preventing a second wave of the coronavirus. The government hopes to be able to make a decision on when to launch the app by mid-July.
How does the app work?
The app works on Bluetooth, collecting the numbers of infected people and checking whether you have encountered those ID numbers. If you have been in the presence of someone who is or has been infected, the app will send you a notification. But for this to work, both the infected person and non-infected person would have to have the app downloaded on their phones.
The information gathered through the app and the use of Bluetooth is used in combination with information gathered by the GGD when you are tested. The app will allow more people to be notified quicker if they have come into contact with someone with the coronavirus. This allows people to be tested earlier, thereby reducing the risk of the spread of the virus.
Once live, use of the app will be voluntary and completely anonymous. No personal details need to be entered, and no information about you or your location will be stored. Minister de Jonge has said 60 percent of the Dutch population would have to use the app for it to be at its most effective.