India’s coronavirus disease contact-tracing app Aarogya Setu became the world’s fastest growing mobile app on Tuesday night with 50 million users in 13 days.
It is to be highlighted that 11 million of these downloads were registered in a single day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi urged people to download the application in his third televised address to the nation, according to the Niti Aayog team lead.
Aarogya Setu Becomes the Fastest Downloaded App
With 99% downloads on Android, Aarogya Setu overtook Nintendo’s popular augmented reality game ‘Pokémon GO’s’ record of 50 million downloads on Google Play in 19 days in 2016.
The downloads surged from 39 million to a peak of 100,000 per minute on Tuesday morning following Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s 10 am address.
By midnight, 50 million people had downloaded the mobile app launched on April 2 to alert users who are at risk of exposure to Covid-19 infection over the past two weeks.
Aarogya Setu Shares Safe Behavioural Advises
Apart from reaching out and informing users about their potential risk of infection, the app also shares safe behaviours and updated medical advisories about the virus containment in 11 regional languages.
All these apps convert personal and location data into a random anonymous device identification that is saved for two weeks in your phone and the phones of other users within bluetooth range. That usually comes to around 10 metres for most smartphones.
The data is uploaded on the server and shared with health authorities only when either the user tests positive or is at high risk of infection. It then alerts all other users in the contact chain.
Apart from performing these activities, he app also has a dedicated a chatbot that asks you a series of questions to determine if you have any symptoms of Covid-19.
How Does it Work?
This app will help track the coronavirus infection by using the smartphone’s GPS system and Bluetooth and provide information that will help in determining if you have been near a Covid-19 infected person or not.
The application determines if you are at risk by scanning through a database of known cases across India, and also via location.
Also, since data encryption is a ‘must’ parameter, the app uses your location to know your area and check if you are around infected areas of the database and also needs an activated Bluetooth to determine if you have been within six feet from the infected person.
It gives each user a unique anonymous device identification on registration. The linking of the device identification to a mobile number is a one-time process and is then encrypted and secured in a server.
All future interactions from device to server are done through encrypted device identification detail and no personal information is exchanged after the one-time registration.
The information of all unique interactions is stored only for 30 days on the device, after which all data is deleted. The data for non-risk users is deleted from the server in 45 days, and for at-risk patients, it is wiped in 60 days.