Take-up of NHS contact-tracing app could be only 10%

Pilot studies show low download rate as app launches in England and Wales

Take-up of the NHS Covid contact-tracing app being launched in England and Wales on Thursday – and once touted as key to controlling the pandemic – could be as low as 10% in some places, government sources believe.

International examples show take-up rates of similar apps at between 10% and 30%, a far cry from the NHS app target in April of 80% of smartphone users. Oxford University’s Big Data unit, which advised the government on its development, said that would be the equivalent of 56% of the population.

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