| New Delhi |
Published: April 30, 2020 8:20:44 am
Health experts around the world have been advising everyone to practice social distancing in order to stop the spread of the coronavirus. We are repeatedly reminded to maintain social distance of at least 1.5 metres from one another so the chance of contracting the infection is low. Given its a very new practice it often gets difficult to maintain this distance. But what if there was an app that can alert you when someone enters our zone and ask you to move away?
Well, interestingly there’s an app called 1point5 from the United Nations, which notifies users when someone enters their 1.5 metres radius. The app is available on both Google Play store and also Apple App store.
How to use 1point5
Developed by the United Nations Technology Innovation Labs (UNTIL), 1point5 app helps you maintain social distancing. The app scans for nearby mobile devices via Bluetooth and warns users when a device enters the 1.5-meter perimeter. It functions quite similar to the India’s government’s very own Aarogya Setu app that also uses Bluetooth technology to alert you if you have unknowingly come in contact with a COVID-19 positive person.
Using the 1point5 social distancing app is quite easy as it doesn’t require you to register. Just install the app > Tap on ‘Get Started’ > Turn on Bluetooth > Set a minimum distance between 1.5 metres and 2 metres > Tap ‘Start Monitoring’.
1point5 app tracks Bluetooth signal of nearby devices and alerts you when a device enters your minimum distance mark. Others do not need to have the app installed but their Bluetooth needs to be turned on or else the app will not pick up the presence of that person.
1point5 also lets you select the nature of the notification. You can turn on or off Sound and Vibrations for proximity alerts. You can also set up the app to exclude the devices of family members and those with whom you live.
UNTIL says that 1point5 does not collect or store any personal data. Unlike the Aarogya Setu app this app does not aim to provide health information or health advice but only acts as a social distancing reminder.
Such an app is very crucial at this crucial time when maintaining social distancing is the key to prevent the spread of coronavirus pandemic. India has been under lockdown since March 14 which is supposed to lift on May 3 — the day when the second phase of lockdown will end.
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