BENGALURU: Bengaluru may be known as the IT city, but the IT cell of the city’s municipal corporation itself appears to be incompetent, going by the state of the apps developed by them. The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) is quite productive when it comes to developing new apps, but where it takes a beating is the quality of those apps.
Apart from a couple, most citizens are not aware of the apps.
A check on Google Play Store, where the apps are available, reveals that they have abysmal ratings and reviews. Several apps have very few downloads, showing their low reach among citizens.
Sahaaya is BBMP’s most popular app, with over 10,000 downloads on Play Store, but a low rating of 2.8 stars out of 5.
Ajith A, a resident of Bellandur, said, “My first complaint was resolved, but after that I have lodged around four complaints, and for all of them, the status was updated to ‘resolved’ even though no action was taken.” Scores of users have faced similar issues.
Srinivas Alavilli of Citizens for Bengaluru, said, “The tech on the apps always feels half-baked.”
Harsha Halvi, app developer and co-founder of TBG Labs, said the government was in a tough position as their apps needed to work on every device — from a 5-year-old smartphone to a new one.
“Secondly, the way most of these are developed is by outsourcing, and it goes to the lowest bidder, which is not very reliable. No wonder not just BBMP apps, but most government apps are bad. A couple of them stand out, like Digilocker, but those are big budget projects,” he said.
Sreekanth SR, co-founder and CEO of Mahiti Infotech Pvt Ltd, said the BBMP needs a dedicated team to maintain the apps and also to handle the traffic on them.
Currently, the IT cell has a strength of 20 people.
However, the advisor to the BBMP’s IT Cell Sheshadri T refused to comment on any of the issues, saying instead, “We are not authorised to discuss anything with the media without the permission of Honourable Commissioner, BBMP.”