With hundreds and thousands of new cases every day, the Coronavirus pandemic has become a major global concern. The number of confirmed cases in India stands at 873 with 149 new cases in just 24 hours, which is a big concern for all of us. In order to decrease its spread, it is very important to detect the cases as soon as possible. For the same reason, the Indian government has launched a new ‘Corona Kavach’ app. These are the things that you need to know about this app.  


The application is a location-based app developed by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) in association with the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MHFW). The app is currently in its beta stage and is only available on the Google Play store. There’s no word on the official launch date for this app but interested users can try out the beta version for now.  


The end goal of the app is to use a person’s smartphone data to track their location and alert them about the risks of being exposed to the Novel Coronavirus. According to ministry officials, the app aims to provide information about coronavirus and capture information. It will track a user’s location in one-hour intervals and inform them if they have come in contact with a person tested positive for COVID-19.  


The application requires you to fill out a form with six questions. It asks if you have any difficulty in breathing, what your temperature is, if you’ve returned from a foreign country, whether you’re feeling a body ache, if you have a dry cough or sore throat, and if you’ve met anyone from a foreign country. 


Based on these questions, the app sorts you into different categories and assigns different codes. Green code signifies all fine, orange is to go see a doctor, yellow for quarantine, and red for infected. After that, whenever you go out of the house, you can press a button to activate the “Kavach”, tracking your movements for an hour. If someone else has the app and has marked themselves as infected or quarantined, and when you come into the same vicinity, the app will send you an alert.  


Although the idea of the app seems very interesting, it is very unlikely that it’ll be a success. The idea needs enough people to install this app, and voluntarily inform the government about their infected status, and also remember to turn it on whenever they go out in public. Even if people start using it as required, there’s no guarantee that location tracking via GPS will be accurate enough to do this effectively.