COVIDSafe app use lagging, poll reveals

October 15, 2020 BY

The COVIDSafe app was launched on April 26.

ONLY just over half of regional Victorians have the COVIDSafe app installed on their phones five months after its launch, according to a new Roy Morgan poll.
The COVIDSafe app – which is voluntary – recognises other devices with the same app installed and Bluetooth enabled.
It notes the date, time, distance and duration of the contact and the other user’s reference code, but does not collect the location.
When someone is diagnosed with COVID-19, state health officials will ask them or their parent/guardian who they have been in contact with. If the person has the COVIDSafe app and provides their permission, the encrypted contact information from the app will be uploaded to a secure information storage system.
The Coalition has been talking up COVIDSafe since its launch on April 26, with Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Health Minister Greg Hunt both explicitly linking large numbers of people downloading the app to a further easing of coronavirus restrictions.
More than 7 million people have downloaded COVIDSafe, but it is not clear how many of those people are still actively using it. The app has also had some technical problems.
According to the sixth Roy Morgan Snap SMS survey on Victoria’s Stage 4 restrictions, carried out on October 5-6 with nearly 2,200 respondents, found 53 per cent of Victorians outside Melbourne and 57 per cent of Melburnians had downloaded COVIDSafe.
“The real value of the COVIDSafe app depends on everyone having it on their phone. This poll suggests that there is a way to go before those without the app see value in it – for them,” Roy Morgan chief executive officer Michele Levine said.
Two-thirds of LNP supporters (67 per cent) have COVIDSafe installed on their phone, a far higher rate than either ALP supporters (54 per cent) or Greens supporters (56 per cent).
About 65 per cent of Victorians aged 65 and older have the app on their phone – the highest penetration rate of any age group, ahead of 55 per cent of people aged 50-64 and 54 per cent of those aged under 50.
The poll also found Victorians want shopping centres to have the right to refuse entry to people not wearing masks and those who won’t take a temperature check
Only 22 per cent of respondents believed a person should be refused entry into a shopping centre if they refused to have COVIDSafe on their phone.
This contrasts strongly with Victorian views on masks and temperature checks – 90 per cent say people not wearing a mask should be refused entry to a shopping centre; and 87 per cent say people who refuse a temperature check should be refused entry.

Share This