A Typology-Based Approach to Tracing-App Adoption During the COVID-19 Pandemic: The Case of the SwissCovid App
Keywords:technology adoption, diffusion, privacy calculus, opinion leadership, digital contact tracing, COVID-19
Contact tracing technology has been introduced in many countries as part of the COVID-19 containment strategy. However, research indicates that current adoption rates are too low for tracing apps to be effective. To address the complexity of app adoption, a typology-based approach is presented that differentiates between refusers who generally reject app adoption, ditherers who hesitate to adopt the app, adopters who have downloaded and activated the app, and de-adopters who had installed the app but later uninstalled it. A national online survey of N = 1,535 participants in Switzerland revealed significant differences among these groups of people regarding their perceptions about app-related benefits and costs, knowledge about data handling in technology, and app-related opinion leadership. The results indicate that communication strategies that aim to enhance the rate of app adoption should focus on ditherers and adopters; the former are the most promising target group for behavioral change efforts, and the latter seem to be the best means to reach out to this promising group.
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Copyright (c) 2021 Sarah Geber, Thomas Friemel
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