Australians will now be able to access up-to-date official information through a new federal government app.
The free app, along with a new government WhatsApp feature, will allow for people to get the latest information on the number of cases in Australia, along with news on restrictions and travel bans.
To activate the Whatsapp channel, users have been told to visit aus.gov.au/whatsapp to launch the new feature.
Links to the apps:
Announcing the new features on Sunday, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the app would allow for more people to receive official health advice in the one place.
"[It] enables us to talk to Australians in terms of basic health advice, updates on the measures that are being put in place by state and federal governments," he said.
"That will assist you to get accurate and timely information about what is being done by governments around the country to support you as you and your family and your household and community work through the difficult months ahead."
The app also provides advice for how to keep social distance and prevent the spread of the virus, along with allowing users to check their symptoms.
The app has already become the number one download on Apple's app store.
Development of the app and the Whatsapp channel came through a partnership with Australian tech giants Atlassian.
Are you on WhatsApp?— Australian Government (@ausgov) March 29, 2020
Message +61 400 253 787 or go to https://t.co/Xs1WqzA12f in your web browser to get #COVID19 information you can trust from the official Australian Government chatbot.
Whatsapp is available from the Apple Store or Google Play.#coronavirusaustraliapic.twitter.com/gNfuVQR1C8
Here's a step by step guide to using the Coronavirus Australia Whatsapp service:
- Download WhatsApp onto your phone.
- Add the government's WhatsApp number into your WhatsApp contacts. The number is +61 400 253 787
- Send the WhatsApp account a message.
- You will receive a message back.
- Follow the instructions to get the information you need.
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