STREAMING NOW: Watch Now

WAAY 31 I-TEAM: Alabama’s GuideSafe coronavirus app isn’t working how you might think it is

The director said they're working with Apple & Google to fix the issues.

Posted: Sep 3, 2020 8:28 PM
Updated: Sep 4, 2020 7:13 AM

The state's contact tracing app is supposed to be one of the biggest advances in tracking and hopefully stopping the spread of coronavirus.

But after two WAAY 31 employees tested positive, the I-TEAM noticed inconsistencies with how the GuideSafe app tracks and notifies people about possible exposure.

Sue Feldman, GuideSafe director, said they identified three major issues with the app and are working with Apple and Google to fix them .

"People are getting these pop-up or secondary notifications alerting users they've had a possible exposure, but no exposures are listed when they go to look. What a pop-up notification indicates is that their device was in proximity to someone who later reported a positive test for COVID-19, but the proximity did not reach the threshold to take further action," she said.

"And so it's letting them know you were kind of in contact but not close contact," she added.

Feldman explained close contact is defined as being within 6 feet of someone for more than 15 minutes.

She explained another issue identified by GuideSafe is the date of exposure might not be accurate.

"We are finding out that people are notified of an exposure on a certain date and they know they were not out of the house on that date, and so that is usually minus one day. You could be notified you were exposed on a Wednesdsay when really you were exposed on a Tuesday," she said.

She said calculating quarantine time is important. Google and Apple do it differently.

"There is an issue between Apple and Google on how they report the quarantine. The Android phones report it as a countdown and the iPhones report it straight 14 days, and so what I mean by a countdown is a quarantine is 14 days. If you get your exposure four days into it then quarantine is 10 days and it does that map for you. On the iPhone it just says 13 days and you have to do the math yourself," she said.

Also very important to know, the phone number you use in the GuideSafe app must be a cell phone, and it must match the contact number you give when you get tested. If the phone numbers don't match, contacts cannot be identified rendering the app nearly useless.

Huntsville/Redstone
Clear
48° wxIcon
Hi: 53° Lo: 31°
Feels Like: 43°
Muscle Shoals
Clear
50° wxIcon
Hi: 54° Lo: 30°
Feels Like: 50°
Huntsville/Madison
Clear
49° wxIcon
Hi: 51° Lo: 29°
Feels Like: 43°
Decatur
Clear
48° wxIcon
Hi: 54° Lo: 31°
Feels Like: 43°
Fort Payne
Clear
47° wxIcon
Hi: 52° Lo: 33°
Feels Like: 41°
WAAY Radar
WAAY WAAY-TV Cam
WAAY Temperatures

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 422598

Reported Deaths: 6120
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson62039921
Mobile30225548
Madison27052186
Tuscaloosa20728267
Montgomery18978305
Shelby18504114
Baldwin16251182
Lee12465101
Morgan12233113
Etowah11735168
Calhoun11122200
Marshall10191107
Houston8598148
Cullman8023105
Limestone800274
Elmore7836101
DeKalb768397
Lauderdale754683
St. Clair7535120
Talladega6166108
Walker5897174
Jackson580341
Colbert532073
Blount530483
Autauga518455
Coffee441056
Dale396181
Franklin366248
Chilton336165
Russell330310
Covington327268
Escambia316842
Dallas303196
Chambers282769
Clarke281433
Tallapoosa2616107
Pike248729
Marion245650
Lawrence243647
Winston226635
Bibb215147
Geneva201435
Marengo199029
Pickens196531
Hale175842
Barbour172936
Butler169658
Fayette168226
Cherokee160330
Henry153621
Monroe145217
Randolph139835
Washington137626
Clay126145
Crenshaw118744
Lamar118019
Cleburne117423
Macon114735
Lowndes110335
Wilcox103121
Bullock99028
Perry97419
Conecuh94420
Sumter89026
Greene76023
Coosa60515
Choctaw51224
Out of AL00
Unassigned00

Tennessee Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 685321

Reported Deaths: 8391
CountyCasesDeaths
Shelby761671128
Davidson70706661
Knox38646393
Hamilton34556326
Rutherford33114283
Unassigned22759126
Williamson21364138
Sumner18205230
Out of TN1612079
Wilson14405155
Montgomery14367149
Sullivan12577211
Washington11889191
Blount11887124
Maury10941123
Bradley1075190
Sevier10461108
Putnam9931136
Madison9099178
Robertson761885
Hamblen6954109
Anderson6759102
Greene6569108
Tipton619065
Gibson5630111
Coffee560681
Cumberland537872
Dickson534678
Bedford532086
Roane519179
Carter5091112
Lawrence507569
McMinn506673
Warren497553
Loudon493750
Jefferson474975
Dyer473682
Monroe455162
Hawkins444968
Franklin410758
Obion399478
Fayette396251
Rhea381556
Lincoln378344
Marshall343536
Cocke342856
Weakley339448
Cheatham335230
Henderson332056
Campbell323940
Giles321071
White310043
Hardeman308752
Carroll307859
Hardin297647
Lauderdale293131
Macon287350
Wayne260719
Henry260358
Overton252942
DeKalb241741
Haywood239745
McNairy238142
Smith230527
Trousdale228714
Marion227731
Scott225231
Hickman222734
Fentress212531
Claiborne210129
Grainger208135
Johnson201532
Morgan188614
Crockett180338
Bledsoe174110
Chester173237
Unicoi166843
Cannon157019
Lake155319
Decatur147226
Polk142817
Grundy139320
Union138721
Sequatchie136518
Humphreys132617
Benton131935
Lewis127220
Meigs114016
Stewart105220
Jackson103721
Perry94725
Houston93922
Clay93726
Moore7959
Pickett67619
Van Buren6587
Hancock4026

Community Events