Deutsche Telekom, SAP to develop European Covid-19 tracing system

Deutsche Telekom and SAP, which developed the coronavirus tracing mobile application in Germany, have signed a contract to build a European software platform for the exchange of Covid-19 infection warnings. Deutsche Telekom SAP Covid-19 tracing system


Deutsche Telekom and SAP have been working with a joint team since the end of April on the corona warning app, which is designed as an open source solution. SAP is providing the necessary software technology via a technical platform and is driving forward solution development. Deutsche Telekom is contributing its expertise in processes relating to network and mobile communications technology, system integration and data security and is ensuring secure and efficient operations.


The companies will now build the gateway together, said a spokesperson for the European Commission. The hope is that creating the gateway would help slow the spread of COVID-19 by making it possible to log encounters between people while they are travelling abroad and issue push warnings should one of them be infected.

Such a ‘roaming’ function would be an add-on to the Bluetooth-based smartphone tracker apps, which now only work within national borders, with the goal of making it safer to revive travel and tourism.

The European Commission signed the contract with SAP and Deutsche Telekom’s IT services unit T-Systems to build the platform for cross-border exchange of exposure notifications, the three said in a joint statement. Details on further steps will follow soon.

It should be possible to launch a pilot version of the gateway in three to four weeks, Commission spokesman Johannes Bahrke added.

The two companies, designers of Germany’s Corona-Warn-App which has been downloaded 16 million times, proposed creating the gateway in June, when EU member states agreed on a framework to make the apps interoperable.

Nine EU states – Austria, Croatia, Czechia, Denmark, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Latvia and Poland – have launched apps based on a technology standard developed by Alphabet’s Google and Apple.

Another nine countries plan similar apps that will use this “decentralised” design, where phones that come into close contact share random identifiers and receive risk notifications if a contact later tests positive for COVID-19.

The common design means these apps are compatible and could easily be plugged into the gateway. Experts say it will be more challenging to hook up the French and Hungarian apps, which store data on central servers. Deutsche Telekom SAP Covid-19 tracing system


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