In an interesting move, Google has updated its passes API system to allow Android users to save and access a digital copy of their COVID-19 vaccine cards. The feature called COVID Card will initially be rolling out in the US, followed by other countries. The new COVID card will provide information like the name of the vaccine you have taken, time of first and second dose, details on COVID-19 tests. Also Read - Google Chrome sending Enhanced Safe Browsing notifications? Know all about it here
While users won’t be required to download a separate app to save or display the digital card on their Android device, government agencies, public health authorities that are authorised to distribute vaccines will need to use passes APIs to allow users access the digital version of the certificates. The Google Passes APIs have been updated in a way so that developers from healthcare organisations, government agencies can integrate the digital COVID-19 vaccine card information into Google Pay. Also Read - Pixel 6, Pixel 6 Pro are really happening and Google just teased them
To ensure the security of users’ private medicate information, the API will store a digital certificate on the device that is not uploaded to the cloud, Google said. Once stored on the device, the card can be accessed from the home screen even when there is no active internet connection. Further, users can store the card on multiple devices, but one will have to do it manually. Devices running Android 5 or above with Google Play certified can digitally store the COVID-19 vaccine card and testing information. While the pandemic has succumbed millions of lives, getting vaccinated has become vital. But carrying paperwork with vaccination details can be cumbersome at times, thankfully Google’s initiative will help in this regard. Here’s how you can save and access the COVID card on your device. Also Read - Nord 2 5G explosion fiasco: OnePlus releases statement following investigation
How to save and access COVID card on Android device
As mentioned earlier, one can save and access the COVID card if their device is running Android 5 or later and are Play Protect certified. Notably, one doesn’t require the Google Pay app to access the card, as the Passes API and ‘additional cards are handled’ via Google Play services and come pre-installed on mobiles. That said, if your health service provider has used the updated Passes APIs you will be able to see a Save to phone option on the app/website of the healthcare provider to let you save the COVID card on your Android device. Upon tapping the option, you will be prompted to save the details either with Chrome or Google Pay app.
You can choose Google Pay even if the app isn’t installed on your phone. However, a lock screen is required for storing the COVID-19 card on-device, so as to protect the user’s information. To access the card you will require the saved pin, password, or biometric authentication used on your device. Once the card is saved on your device, you can look for it by heading to Settings > Google > Account services > Google Pay. There is an option to add a shortcut as well once you find the card in the Google Pay settings. If you have the Google Pay app installed you can access the card by touching the bottom of the screen and swiping up.