How to setup and use NHSX Coronavirus Contact Tracing App (Updated with HowTo video)

Everyone wants to know how to setup and use the NHSX Coronavirus Contact Tracing App one it becomes available. Here is all the detail that you’ll need

how are you feeling today screen on contact tracing app

The Isle of Wight is the first area in the UK to have a wide spread use of the NHSX Coronavirus Contact Tracing App across its general population (First test was an RAF base).

The following information is correct as we understand it, after two media briefing sessions, both on the workings of the App, and the overview of the Isle of Wight phase.

Further questions are answered in our FAQ: NHSX Coronavirus Contact Tracing App

Watch the video of how to set it up

  1. Install the App

    If you live on the Isle of Wight, you will be sent a letter this week with a Web address on it. It’s important that you enter / type this in on the mobile phone you usually carry around with you, not your tablet or computer.
    Start screen for the App

  2. Enter first part of your postcode

    When you load the App for the first time you will be asked for the first part of your postcode, eg PO30, not the whole postcode
    Enter your postcode

  3. Turn on Bluetooth permission

    As the App uses low energy Bluetooth to detect how close you are to other people/phone you will need this switched on.
    Setting up permissions

  4. Turn on push notifications

    This is needed so you are aware if you’ve come close to others with Covid-19 or if advice on social distancing restrictions change.
    Permission for push notifications

  5. Medical workers only

    If you are a medical worker, to stop the App constantly reporting you being close to others, you will be offered the advice of turning off Bluetooth when you are wearing PPE.

  6. Day-to-day usage

    At this point a randomised ID is generated by the App for you phone.

    The application will now run in the background, even if your phone is locked.

    If you come close to other people running the application, a ‘Proximity event’ is generated. This stores the ID of the other device, how long you were close to it and the strength of the signal (indicating how close you were to the other device)

  7. If you fall ill

    The App will ask you ‘How are you feeling today?’. If you select ‘I feel unwell’, you will be asked if you:
    a) Have a high temperature
    b) Have a continuous cough
    c) What was the start date of the symptoms
    d) If your information is accurate
    e) To press the Submit button
    How are you feeling?

  8. If you hit Submit your details when ill

    a) The last 28 days of proximity events gathered on your phone via Bluetooth will be uploaded to what NHSX describe as ‘a secure backend.’

    b) An eight digit reference number will appear on the screen, with a phone number for you to call. Operators will take a note of your address and a testing kit will be dispatched to you. It will be collected the next day, so it can be sent for testing.

    c) Algorithms then examine this data and make judgements as to which people you have been near to are ‘at risk’. These people will then be alerted to their App, giving them advice on any self-isolation steps to take.

    d) If your test comes back negative, those who had been warned, will receive a new message updating them

Watch the video

Article edit
1:14pm 18th Mar 2020 – Added details about Wightlink’s offering.
1.57pm 18th Mar 2020 – Added comment from Fran Collins

Article edit
9:06pm 5th May 2020 – Added HowTo video and altered headline

Monday, 4th May, 2020 5:00pm



Filed under: Government, Island-wide, Isle of Wight News, Top story

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7 Comments on "How to setup and use NHSX Coronavirus Contact Tracing App (Updated with HowTo video)"

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Thanks. This is the most practical, useful information regarding the app I’ve read so far in any publication.


The most practical information is NOT to use it!

The government has chosen to centralise the data obtained by the app in spite of suggestions that this could make it unreliable. Other countries have used a less privacy sensitive approach. The UK government has prioritised control of data over reliability and involved GCHQ in its development. One must remember that Johnson, Gove and Cummings were complicit in the illegal garnering of Facebook and other data during… Read more »

They certainly do,only last week they tried conning us into believing they’d reached their pie in the sky testing figure.
Apple and Google apparently have reservations about this thing,but that may be because they’re not involved and and coining it in.
Also,two of the ‘companies’involved in this are Serco and G4s whose less than stella performance at the prison service has presumably been forgotten.

Serco had its pending prosecution for Fraud deferred by CPS – after it had claimed fees on tags for dead people. The fact Govt would even consider using criminally acting companies says a lot about their moral calibre IMO That Govt employed Vote Leave crook Dominic Cummings, along with eugenics fan Andrew Sabinsky – speaks volumes – as does the corrupt Croneyism which saw fellow Vote Leave… Read more »

“ Everyone wants to set up and use “ based on what, I know many who don’t. Yet more hype and propaganda. It’s all nonsense. I wonder how much money is being made out this.


Violation of our democratic rights, pure and simple. Without a doubt it opens the door to privacy infringement and discrimination. The App doesn’t even work properly it’s being used to kick start the economy and remove lockdown compromising our health and well being. The Isle of Wight is an experiment that could go very wrong, we can’t take that chance.