COVID Alert App Hits 6.3 Million Downloads, New Update Adds Menu Changes

Covid alert march 2021

Canada’s COVID Alert exposure notification app for iOS and Android recently surpassed 6.3 million downloads. The app was also updated this week to bring a couple of menu changes to make the app easier to use, says Canadian Digital Service.

There are now icons for entering a one-time key and disabling COVID Alert. The new icons and colours are supposed to make these “important actions easy to find”.

Covid alert menu march 2021

Canada’s COVID Alert app is based on Google and Apple’s exposure notification framework, which leverages Bluetooth on devices for anonymous “handshakes” in the background. The app does not use GPS info or collect any user data. It has been vetted as safe by Canada’s privacy commissioner and provincial counterparts.

When someone tests positive for COVID-19, they can anonymously alert others that may have been in contact using COVID Alert, by obtaining a one-time-use key from their provincial health authority.

Provinces currently supporting COVID Alert:

  • Manitoba
  • New Brunswick
  • Newfoundland and Labrador
  • Ontario
  • Quebec
  • Saskatchewan
  • Nova Scotia
  • Prince Edward Island
  • Northwest Territories

Still waiting for:

  • Alberta (shame!)
  • British Columbia (shame!)
  • Nunavut
  • Yukon

Download links: 

As of March 11, 2021, COVID Alert has been downloaded 6,368,583 times, according to the federal government’s website, with 21,317 one-time keys used.