The French technology minister accused the country’s Covid-19 Contact Alert app of “timing and culture” of being poorly taken, and government colleagues who failed to download it said it was “too French”.
Digital Transformation Minister Cedric O’Brien said it was necessary to use an app called StopCovid if the French wanted to avoid further sanctions.
Paris and several other cities have been placed on a red “maximum alert” following the recent outbreak of the virus. Bars in the capital had to be closed for two weeks from Tuesday and new sanitary protocols had to be put in place to keep restaurants open.
Asked why only 2.2 million French people have downloaded the StopCovid app since its launch in June – more than 12.4 million people downloaded the NHS-Kovid-19 in the four days it opened last week, compared to the UK, and 20 million people in Germany downloaded the contact app – O The main problem is timing.
“The UK application was launched at a time when everyone was afraid of the new lockdown, but Stopkovid was launched when everyone thought so. [the virus] Done. It’s different if we start now, ”O told a group of foreign journalists, including the Guardian.
He acknowledged that there was “resistance” to the application in France.
O was diplomatic when asked if the entry of several government ministers made it difficult to convince the population that the application had not been downloaded.
Two weeks ago, Prime Minister Jean Costex revealed on his phone that he did not have a stopcovid. It was later found that the Minister of Justice, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Minister of Citizenship all failed to download the application.
Oh, he admitted he was shocked to learn of the matter last week, saying the ministers were “very French”. When asked if his government colleagues later downloaded the application, he said: “I think so.”
“The question is not whether it is useful or not. This is useful if most people download it. At a time when we are planning to close bars and restaurants. These are just some of the goal setting shareware that you can use. We need to slow down the spread of the virus and make our population, which is very Latin and static, understand that it is a tool to preserve their freedom. We must strive to make the population understand that this is of interest to everyone, ”he said.
“I’m been in Sicily recently and I noticed that the Italians are better organized than we are. I had to give my name and telephone number when I went into the restaurant. In France it was very complicated.”
O points out that many people in France have “unreasonable fears” of what the app describes as “fake news reports” of data harvesting.
“It simply came to our notice then. People do not understand what use it is. ”
The Anglo-Welsh NHS Kovid-19 application is based on technology that integrates with Apple and Google to ensure the decentralized management of users’ personal data. Stopkovid, developed by a French research firm, relies on a central server.
O says France is coming forward to launch 5G across the country despite ongoing controversy over the new network.
“Twelve countries have already launched 5G and France is committed to doing so,” he said.
“As the President said, we are not going back to the oil lamp era. It is a key factor for economic development and important for the environment. Not going to 5G is insane. People have to accept this position.”