To download or not to download the Covid-19 Track and Trace App? What is more influential in users’ minds?

Alistair Sutcliffe*, Nelly Bencomo, Andy Darby, Luis Hernan Garcia Paucar, Peter Sawyer

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: to investigate the role of values in technology acceptance in general and in the context of the UK Covid Track and Trace App.
Methods: A survey and interview study was conducted to elicit users’ perceptions of values in general, values in relation to choice of IT products and values which were influenced the decision to download (or not) the NHS Covid-19 Track and Trace App. Other non-value issues such as utility, price and recommendations were considered.
Results: Users’ value in life differ slightly from those considered important for selecting IT products. For general IT product decisions, functionality, trust and price with values equality, security and sustainability were important. For the Covid-19 App decision two values, helpfulness and equality, with recommendations/trust and operating system compatibility, were the main influences. Interview data indicated that downloader users were motivated by social responsibility and utility – being able to access workplaces and leisure venues – while non-downloaders had little perceived need for the App, combined with mistrust of the App's provenance (NHS and the Government) linked to security and privacy concerns. The implications for values in technology acceptance decisions are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Article number103140
Number of pages15
JournalInternational Journal of Human-Computer Studies
Early online date28 Aug 2023
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2023

Bibliographical note

Copyright © 2023 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (

Acknowledgments & Funding: This work has been funded by EPSRC Research Project Twenty20Insight (Grant No. EP/T017627/1).


  • Covid-19 App
  • IT products
  • Technology acceptance
  • User choice
  • Values


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