What is Sandes? Features, significance & details of the Government's new Instant Messaging App

Know all about Sandes, the Government of India's new Instant Messaging App here. Get details about the features, significance and uses of the App here
Sandes App
Sandes App

Why in News?

National Informatics Centre has launched the instant messaging App platform called Sandes. It is comparable to WhatsApp. It can be used for any kind of communication by anyone possessing either a mobile number or email address. 

Sandes: Requirement

  1. The nationwide lockdown was imposed in March 2020. The Government felt the need to launch this new platform of communication between its employees as they had been working from home. 
  2. After security scares, the Ministry of Home Affairs had issued an advisory last year so as to avoid platforms like Zoom for official communication purposes. 
  3. After the Computer Emergency Response Team (Cert-In) an advisory to all government employees to avoid Zoom for communication. 

NIC:

The National Informatics Centre is a branch of the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology. It handles the back end on Sandes App. 

Significance of the launch of App:

  1. The application brings in an alternative to WhatsApp and Zoom which are not indigenous. 
  2. The government is also strategizing to push for use of India-made software so as to build an ecosystem of indigenously developed products

Sandes App: Features

  1. Sandes has a similar interface to many other apps currently available in the market currently. 
  2. There is a shortcoming that there is no option to transfer the chat history between two platforms. 
  3. There are also many features including group making, broadcasting messages or forwarding emojis. 
  4. The app uses a valid mobile number or an email id to be used. 
  5. There is also a security feature that allows the user to mark the messages as confidential.
  6. The App allows the user to be aware that the messages would not be shared with others.
  7. The users would not be allowed to change their phone numbers or email addresses once they are registered. 

Sandes App: Other Details

The first version of the App was released in August 2020 by NIC. The App was said to be used by the employees of both central and state Government. It was initially launched for Android users but now can also be used by iOS users. 

Recently after the notice issued by the Government to WhatsApp, they have agreed to postpone the implementation of the new privacy policy to May 14 instead of February 5, 2021. 
This policy was different for the people of India and Europe. WhatsApp was even rebuked by the Supreme Court of India and was asked to value their privacy more than the money. 

Now that the new App Sandes has been made public, the blow to Social Media giants such as Facebook and WhatsApp would be huge. 

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