The government has launched a mobile application that enables people to report non-emergency issues they observe in public infrastructure or in public spaces.
The app allows users to capture photos of potholes, broken pipes, stray animals, among other things, and make live, trackable reports to any government department that has portfolio responsibility for the issue being reported.
The app, which is available on apple (iOs) and android devices, is being promoted as a customer service tool for the entire public service. Our news centre downloaded the iOS version on Wednesday, April 26 to see how well the platform functions.
The app downloaded relatively quickly with a stable internet connection. The home tab of the application brings the user to three shortcut links. One link leads to the government’s official website, another leads to the government’s official Facebook
page, and the third goes to the BVI Tourist Board’s official website.
There is also a tab on the app for government notices and another tab called ‘requests’ which appears to show all reports that have been populated on the app by its users. This section displays an interactive map of the Virgin Islands
. Scattered across that map are pins that highlight the individual reports that have been made to date. These pins give descriptions of the reported problems in a particular area and even show any comments that have been made by the public service on the issue.
To make a report, a user has to register with their first and last name, email address, and contact number. A one-time password is then sent to the user’s email address for him/her to activate their account. Submitting a report would be fairly straightforward for the average smartphone user. The platform appears to be relatively user-friendly and does not show any visible signs of glitches.
The app even has a ‘profile’ section resembling that of a social media platform where persons can upload a profile photo (if they choose), and manage their account where they have the option to change their account name, and their preferred language, etc.
The initial public response to the app on social media appears to be largely positive.