Another Canadian Developer Clones ArriveCAN in Days, Protesting $54M Cost

TribalScale, a Toronto-based development company that specializes in building apps for corporate clients, announced on Monday that it successfully created a clone of the federal government’s ArriveCAN app over the weekend.

The now-optional ArriveCAN app served as a means for travellers to submit their vaccination status and other mandatory health information when crossing the border into Canada. Last week, TribalScale said it would hold a voluntary, internal hackathon to recreate ArriveCAN and prove that it shouldn’t have cost Canadian taxpayers $54 million.

“Our team wanted to use this as an opportunity for change. The goal of this was to show how smart and talented the Canadian tech community is and offer up a new resource to help with the procurement of technology services for the Canadian government,” said TribalScale CEO Sheetal Jaitly.

TribalScale’s hackathon ran over the weekend and ended on Monday. The result was ArriveTS, a recreation of ArriveCAN that was created with just two days of work. ArriveTS replicates the following features of the original app:

  • Sign-up flow
  • Created ability to add travel documents
  • Created ability to add additional traveler profiles to accounts
  • Ability to save travelers’ details for future trips
  • Ability to complete declaration forms (approximately a dozen questions)
  • Ability to input trip information; integration with API for list of airport options
  • Created placeholder to scan Passport or PR Card to add traveler details
  • List of linked traveler resources

TribalScale intends for the ArriveTS code to be open-source. The company said it will put the app up on GitHub and release a full demo this week. In the meantime, you can watch ArriveTS in action in the video below.

Lazer Technologies, another digital innovation lab, also organized a hackathon to clone ArriveCAN last week. The company ended up creating LazerCAN in less than two days, also spiting ArriveCAN’s $54 million sticker price.

When TribalScale announced plans to clone ArriveCAN, several other firms reached out and expressed interest in joining the efforts. Plenty of Canadian tech companies were outraged by how much the government paid for ArriveCAN. As such, TribalScale is seeking to establish The Canadian Technology Consortium.

“We are forming this consortium of leaders in digital to be a free advisory resource for the Canadian government at all levels across the country on any digital questions now or in the future. Let’s bring capital efficiency and productivity to our digital ecosystem within the government. We are encouraging leaders from the Canadian tech community to apply now,” said Jaitly.

This proposed consortium will hold its first meeting on Friday, October 14. “We envision this resource to be a long-term solution to support for all levels of Canadian government. TribalScale’s mission statement is Right The Future and this is another way we can help do just that.”