Protect your loved ones. Download the app.
The new NHS COVID-19 app, now available to download for free in England and Wales, is the fastest way to see if you're at risk from coronavirus. The faster you know, the quicker you can alert and protect your loved ones and community. The app has a number of tools to protect you, including contact tracing, local area alerts and venue check-in. It uses proven technology from Apple and Google, designed to protect every user’s privacy. Read more about how we protect your data and privacy.
How do I get the NHS COVID-19 app?
If you have an Apple phone, you can download the app from the Apple App Store. If you have an Android phone, you can download it from Google Play. The app is designed for use on smartphones only, not tablets. This is because for contact tracing to be effective, it needs to be on a device that you carry with you most of the time. For more help on downloading the app, see this user guide. If you're having issues downloading the app, visit our troubleshooting common questions, or report a problem using our online form.
Should I download the NHS COVID-19 app if I have already had coronavirus (COVID-19)?
You should download the app even if you've tested positive for coronavirus before, or think you may have had it. If you've had coronavirus, you probably have some immunity to it, which means you may not get infected again for a while. However, it’s not clear how long your immunity will last, so it’s possible that you could still become infected. Also, if you come into contact with an infected person, you could get the virus on your belongings and pass it on.
Downloading the app will help protect your family, friends and those in your community as well as yourself. This is because the app supports the NHS's wider programme to stop the spread of the virus. The quicker we can stop the spread of the virus, the sooner we can get back to a more normal life.
Can my child use the NHS COVID-19 app?
If your child is aged 16 or over, they can download and use the app. Although those aged 16 and over can use the app in education settings, the main benefit is outside that, when they are socialising, using public transport, or in a public space. If a 16 or 17 year old receives an alert through the app, they should notify a trusted adult. When they are in an education setting, this trusted adult should be a member of staff who will then follow official guidelines.
Will the NHS COVID-19 app work on all phones?
he app is supported on Android and Apple (iOS) phones. The app currently supports Apple iOS versions 13.5 and higher, and Android version Marshmallow (v6.0) and higher. This is because the app needs the Exposure Notification framework developed by Apple and Google, which is only available in these versions. You can:
Your phone must have Bluetooth enabled for the app to work. You can view which smartphones have been successfully tested with the app.
Older models of Apple (iPhone 5S and iPhone 6/6Plus or earlier) and Android phones that do not support iOS 13.5 or Android 6.0 (Marshmallow) and higher will not be able to use the app. Windows phones and new models of Huawei smartphones launched from May 2019 will also not be able to use the app. This is because your phone needs access to the Apple App Store, or Google Play Services, to be able to download the NHS COVID-19 app.
New models of Huawei smartphones launched from May 2019 include:
Huawei P40 Pro
Huawei Mate 30 series
Huawei Mate Xs
Huawei Honor 30
What if I don’t have a smartphone?
The NHS COVID-19 app only works on smartphones that are compatible with the Exposure Notification framework developed by Apple and Google. Even if you do not have a compatible smartphone yourself, you will still benefit from other people downloading the app. This is because even low level use of the app will help us understand more about how the virus spreads and will support the wider programme, which has been designed to fight the virus. The app is works in addition to the regular contact tracing that is already taking place throughout the UK.
Should health and care workers use the NHS COVID-19 app?
Health and care workers should use the NHS COVID-19 app in most cases. If you’re a health or care worker practising infection prevention and control (IPC), including wearing correct PPE, you should pause contact tracing on your app. Remember to turn it back on after you remove your PPE..
If you believe that you've been in contact with coronavirus, or get an alert telling you that you’ve been in contact with someone who has tested positive, please refer to your local public health risk assessment process.
Will the app be used in schools and other education settings?
Anyone aged 16 or over can download and use the NHS COVID-19 app. This includes staff and some pupils or students in education settings. Information about the app, and guidance for its use in schools and further education settings, is available for education providers in England and Wales.
Will downloading the NHS COVID-19 app mean I no longer need to worry about social distancing?
You must still follow the government’s advice on social distancing, even when you're using the app. As part of a large-scale, integrated contact tracing and testing programme, the app is playing an important role in protecting communities and helping life return to normal as quickly as possible.
Should I use the NHS COVID-19 app while I'm at work?
It's important you use the app at all times, including while at work, except if you:
store your phone in a locker while you're working or are involved in a leisure activity, like swimming
are already protected by a Perspex (or equivalent) screen
are a health and care worker and are wearing medical grade PPE, such as a surgical mask, in a clinical setting
In most of these situations, you're already protected, so it is highly unlikely that you would catch the virus. If your phone is not with you, use the ‘pause’ function on the app so that the contact tracing part doesn’t work. Or, you could switch your phone off . If you forget, you might get an alert because an infected person was near your phone when your phone wasn’t with you. Read more about how and when to pause contact tracing.
Can I use the NHS COVID-19 app on another device such as a laptop, tablet or Apple watch?
The app is designed for use on phones only. It’s not designed for use on laptops, PCs or Apple watches. It’s only effective if you have it on a device that is with you most of the time.You will only be able to install the app if you have Apple iOS versions 13.5 and higher, or Android Marshmallow (v6.0) and higher. Read more about which smartphones the app will work on. If you have a compatible smartphone and cannot install the app, you can report a technical problem.