KaiOS Technologies, the maker of the third-biggest mobile operating system – KaiOS – has outlined what it is doing to help its users fight COVID-19. As KaiOS targets people just now connecting to the internet, they tend to be low-income and more susceptible to contracting and spreading COVID-19, according to the firm.
The company said on its website that it’s supporting developers that are creating solutions to tackle COVID-19 and that it’s working with carriers to promote the apps “to the largest number of users.” Three apps that the firm outlined are BeSafe, COVID-19 Stats, and Life. It said that it also has an upcoming announcement that will discuss a new project with the government of Nigeria and a local digital agency which will make virtual learning a possibility in the country – the project includes distributing devices, for free, to students in Nigeria.
The first app which KaiOS Technologies is advocating is called BeSafe. It’s a simple app with essential information about COVID-19 and how to stay safe. The content is sourced from the World Health Organization (WHO) and is available in English, French, Spanish, Simplified Chinese, Urdu, Arabic, Swahili, and Russian. The app has been available on the KaiStore since March 23 and has become the second most popular app on the platform. Push notifications and texts, sent by carriers, are making more people aware of the app.
The second app is COVID-19 Stats. It includes information about the number of total cases, active cases, and deaths around the world by country. Most people in developed countries can easily grab this information from various places but when your only internet-connected device is a KaiOS phone, then this app becomes quite useful to see what is happening. It is available in French and English.
Finally, Life is an app that gives first-time internet users access to tools and resources in digital skills, health, education, and other vital topics. The app also includes coronavirus-related information from UNICEF and the WHO. From the app, users can also activate the World Health Organization’s WhatsApp chatbot which can answer queries in real-time. The Life app is being popularised through ad campaigns for the app inside of KaiOS apps and games.
In other news, KaiOS announced that it was continuing to expand in Latin America with the launch of the Alcatel 3078 in Mexico. This device supports Wi-Fi and 3G and costs $32 (779 Pesos). It has a 2.4” display, 512MB of storage (expandable to 32GB via MicroSD), and comes with a 1,030mAh battery that provides hours of talk time. Those that pick up the device will, of course, have access to all the COVID-19 apps mentioned earlier.