Coronavirus: Aarogya Setu becomes world fastest app to reach 50M download, says Niti Aayog CEO

Aarogya Setu app alerts people if any known or person in their vicinity has tested positive for the novel coronavirus.

The Indian government's mobile app Aarogya Setu, developed for tracking coronavirus patients, has become the world's fastest app to reach 50 million downloads in just 13 days, Niti Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant said on Wednesday.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his address to the nation on April 14 had appealed to the citizens to download the app.

"Telephone took 75 years to reach 50 million users, radio 38 years, television 13 years, Internet four years, Facebook 19 months, PokemonGo 19 days. Aarogya Setu, India's app to fight COVID-19 has reached 50 million users in just 13 days - the fastest ever globally for an app," Kant said in his tweet.

The death toll due to coronavirus rose to 377, while the number of cases in the country climbed to 11,439.

Aarogya Setu app alerts people if any known or person in their vicinity has tested positive for the novel virus.

District administration has been asking all educational institutions, departments, etc., to push downloading of the app.

The app was developed under a committee set up by the Prime Minister's Office with an active involvement of Niti Aayog and Ministry of Electronics and IT.

According to sources, Tata Consultancy Services is working on testing and some of the other aspects, while Tech Mahindra and the Mahindra Group is working with the committee on the next version of this application and leveraging next-generation technologies like artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), data science.

Tech Mahindra is also working on expanding the reach of Aarogya Setu to all types of phones.

The current version of the Aarogya Setu app is fit for use on smartphones only.

The app supports a host of Indian languages, including Hindi, Gujarati, Marathi, and English, to help the diverse population across states gain access to crucial information with ease.

Developed by an extraordinary team of young engineers, the app is a unique example of the nation’s young talent coming together, pooling resources and efforts to respond to a global crisis. 

In just three days since its launch, the Aarogya Setu app has notched up five million downloads on the Google Play Store; it is occupying the top spot in the Health and Fitness, and the free apps' sections.

(Disclaimer: Additional background information has been added to this PTI copy for context)

Edited by Suman Singh