9.6m people download Germany’s coronavirus app

Some 9.6 million people have downloaded Germany’s coronavirus track-and-trace app, the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) for disease control said on Friday.

The app was made available for download earlier this week on a voluntary basis.

It is intended to facilitate tracking of novel coronavirus infection chains as Germany eases restrictions.

So far, the number of downloads amounts to around 11.5 per cent of the German population of some 83 million people.

Some critics have argued that the app will only be effective if the majority of people in the country use it.

“Every new user makes the app more useful.

“So it is important for the most amount of people possible to participate,” the RKI wrote on Twitter.

Countries such as China and South Korea already developed and released coronavirus tracing apps earlier this year.

European countries such as France and Norway followed suit in June.

Unlike some of the apps made available in other countries, the German version does not use location detection to create movement profiles.

Instead, it uses bluetooth to detect which other app users are in the vicinity.

User data is not stored on central servers. (dpa/NAN)