Home / Technology / News /  What is Aarogya Setu app and how it works

Prime Minister Narendra Modi went on air to address the nation on Tuesday and announced the extension of lockdown till 3 May. During the address the Prime Minister also mentioned Aarogya Setu application and emphasized that all citizens should download the app to help the fight against Covid-19. Here we explain how the app forms a user data base to create a network of information that can alert citizens and government of potential victims of the coronavirus.

The application is available on both Google’s Play Store and Apple’s App Store. It uses location data to point out people that have come in close proximity with any Covid-19 positive patient. The application requests for access to location at all times and also asks for Bluetooth access after download.

Once the user provides these permissions, the app requests for some basic info that will help build data about the users. The information includes age, gender, name, health status and also asks for the countries that the user has been to in the past few weeks. The application also asks if the user belongs to any one of the exempted category of professionals. Then it asks if the user will be willing to help in times of need.

In the next step, a self-assessment test is put forward where the user is asked about their current health and whether they are showing any of the symptoms of Covid-19. The user will also have to declare their travel history. In case you're a doctor, the app will ask if you were exposed to Covid-19 patients. Depending on the answers, the app will suggest a way forward.

The app considers Bluetooth range as a proximity sensor under which the user can be infected by another Covid-19 positive patient. When two smartphones with the app installed in them come in each other's Bluetooth range the app will exchange information. If one of the user is positive, the other person will be alerted about possibility of being infected. These potential cases are then notified to government for further testing.

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