Singapore will require all moviegoers to use a tracking app or device to check into theatres before entry starting Monday.
It is an additional step for Singaporeans, who in recent months have been logging their whereabouts as part of coronavirus contact-tracing measures by either scanning identification cards or using the SafeEntry digital check-in system on their phones. But that will no longer do at movie theatres starting Monday.
Independent movie theatre The Projector yesterday was the first to announce the new measure. It said that it, along with other cinema operators, had been ordered to implement the new measures soon. They were granted a grace period up to Nov. 16 to implement the new requirements.
“Starting 26th October (that’s next week!) the government has hereby decreed that everyone must use the TraceTogether App OR Token for Safe Entry to all cinemas in Singapore. You will NOT be allowed entry if you do not use either the TraceTogether app or [TraceTogether] Token for SafeEntry into our cinema. Please go and download the app now!” the cinema said yesterday.
IMPORTANT! PLEASE READ!
We have a Together and Trace plan… We have a TraceTogether. We care at The Projector….
The TraceTogether app was launched in March but has not been popular among locals who have complained about privacy concerns and battery drain. Developed by the government’s tech agency GovTech, the TraceTogether app and its hardware device were designed to use wireless Bluetooth technology to trace and alert people who have come into contact with COVID-19 patients.
Vivian Balakrishnan, who is the minister in charge of Singapore’s technological advancement, has denied suspicions that the hardware breaches privacy, saying that it does not use GPS or internet connectivity.
The Health Ministry had said that it will continue to push for the use of TraceTogether, especially for venues such as hotels, eateries, cinemas, and gyms, to allow activities to be conducted safely and reduce the risk of COVID-19 spread.
Singapore began distributing the TraceTogether hardware, or token, to more than 100,000 people last month with priorities given to senior citizens.
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