Science

StopCovid becomes TousAntiCovid to better attract the French

The controversial StopCovid contact tracing app, very little used and little promoted by the government since its release on June 2, is relaunched in a new form on Thursday as the resumption of the epidemic convinced the executive of its potential usefulness .

Renamed TousAntiCovid, the application keeps strictly “the same engine”, according to its promoters.

Its function remains to warn its users when they have crossed in the last two weeks, less than a meter and for more than 15 minutes, another user contaminated by the coronavirus – and who declared it in the system.

On the other hand, the application is the subject of improvements in form and editorial content, to be made more attractive to Internet users.

“We went from an application that said nothing to the user, to an application that begins to talk to the user,” said Thursday one of the senior officials who participated in the development of the new version.

The application thus offers a real-time news feed on the epidemic, figures allowing to measure the spread of it, as well as figures on the use of the application in order to create a ripple effect. and motivation.

The StopCovid application has been used very little (AFP – Martin BUREAU)

There are links to various official information sites on the epidemic, such as santepubliquefrance.fr, mesconseilscovid.santé.gouv.fr, or geodes.santepubliquefrance.fr (information on the epidemic by region).

According to the government, 2.7 million people have registered on StopCovid, 13,000 users have reported their contamination, and more than 800 people have been notified as being at risk.

But despite these very low figures, the application has already demonstrated its usefulness in terms of health, believe its promoters.

For Vittoria Colizza, from Inserm, StopCovid statistics in recent weeks clearly show that the application has made it possible to reduce the transmission of the virus, and that this capacity can be multiplied if it is massively downloaded.

“With adoption around 30%” of the population, “we could be able to” reduce “by more than a third” the transmission of the virus around the contact cases notified by the application, she said.

The government took advantage of this new start to update its estimates on the cost of the application: 196,000 euros per month since its launch in June.

He estimates the development costs of the application at 2.5 million euros, but these were borne directly by the participating institutions and companies, and were not billed to the State.

TousAntiCovid will now be referenced in all official communication on the coronavirus as a barrier gesture, in the same way as the wearing of a mask, physical distancing or the ventilation of rooms.

But the decision to use it or not is up to individuals and them alone, no institution, business, business, restaurant … having the right to demand it.

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