A Newcastle company that poured hundreds of thousands of dollars into a facial recognition and temperature scan device for COVID-19 tracing is calling on the NSW Government to reconsider its mandatory QR code system.
Pulse Analytics had rolled out its Coolgard system to more than 20 businesses to use for contact tracing, but the NSW Government made it mandatory on January 1 for all hospitality businesses to instead use the Service NSW QR code system.
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the change was made to assist contact-tracers after data inaccuracies were reported.
Pulse CEO and managing director Ash Bosworth said it would be a simple process to connect the Coolgard system to Service NSW, but that the company had been stonewalled by the government.
"It would take three to four hours to change the system to connect to Service NSW," he said. "But they haven't offered it up to any vendors.
"It's incredibly frustrating. We've invested hundreds of thousands in this application and to have the rug pulled out from under you is of course deflating.
"We're trying to build a system we can export out of NSW and Australia and they go and clobber us like this.
"I feel more for the companies that are our customers, they've got a system that is much more than just QR contact tracing."
He said there were three ways to collaborate with Service NSW - providing a check-in log to NSW Health, NSW Health could login to the Coolgard system or they could interface their system directly into that of NSW Health.
Mr Boswoth used the ATO Single Touch Payroll system as an example of private technology companies uploading data directly to a government system as proof it could be done.
He said businesses that had bought Coolgard systems were still using them alongside the QR codes as an additional safety measure. As well as temperature checking, the system can also be configured to ask the user questions such as if they have been in a hotspot.
Hotel Delany is still using the system on weekends for temperature checking and to have patrons' details on file in case of any incidents. Licensee Joshua Redman said customers liked the safety of the temperature check to know other patrons in the venue don't have a fever.
IN THE NEWS: