A Department for Health and Social Care spokesperson didn’t comment on the specific details. Instead, they reiterated the goal of supporting the NHS Test and Trace service.

The extras would come alongside a possible new “PPE in your pocket” marketing scheme, and would underscore the challenges the UK faces. Widescale adoption of the contact tracing app may be important to preventing infection spikes that lead to further lockdowns, but there’s no guarantee a wary public will download it. Singapore has considered smart bracelets after struggling to recruit users for its app — the UK might not fare much better if residents see few immediate benefits.

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