After an urgent investigation into issues with Android's coronavirus tracking system Google has said a fix is on its way. As reported by The Verge the company has scrambled to get this fix in place after delays emerged worldwide.
Google has launched a number of initiatives and features to help provide information and help fight the pandemic. These span across is platforms and systems including offering travel-specific advice in search as a fairly straightforward integration.
The company has also launched a Governemnt-sponsored coronavirus hub site. This acts as a centralized point for information about the pandemic in the US. As you would expect with Google the site is pretty extensive in its reach.
However, the company's Exposure Notifications System to track the spread of the pandemic was one of its more ambitious innovations. It now seems that there have been some significant issues with the platform on Android.
Google to bring a fix to coronavirus tracking delays
The issues reported include longer load times and delays in notifications for regular exposure checks. This effects the NHS COVID-19 app that’s used across England and Wales. Many have experienced a loading notification stuck in the notifications area.
Google spokesperson initially addressed the issue in a statement early on January 13. They said, "We are aware of an issue affecting Android apps developed using the Android Exposure Notifications System". They went onto say that engineers were investigating.
Later that same day Google reported that they had fixed the issue. However, they noted that the issues may take some time to go away. Google also said it would work with specific developers if the issues continue to persist.
Google spokesperson summed up the situation in a lengthy statement. The upshot of this statement was that Google has reported to have fixed the issue which may persist for a period. However, the spokesperson insisted that "The issue did not cause the loss of any data or potential exposures".
Google has since provided some more detail revealing that the issues concerned the signature key configuration. This meant that the apps faced problems with the signature key configuration.
This resulted in significant delays in users receiving their notifications which given the nature of the app was quite a major issue.
Hopefully, this spells an end to the troubles with this particular piece of coronavirus technology. As a result, given its importance in providing information for those to self-isolate, any more delays in this software could cause major issues.