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Covid-19, the commercial renaissance of contact tracing apps

On March 20, 2020, three days before the UK’s first lockdown, Tim Spector realized the country was in dire need of ‘Application Monitor COVID-19. Spector, professor of genetic epidemiology at King’s College London, was in an unusually well-placed position to launch exactly this type of application. He was a co-founder of Zoe, a personal nutrition startup that just developed a diet tracking app that allowed users to report what they’ve eaten in the past two weeks and get a personalized score on their diet.Healthy Food.

Although the diet tracking app was still in beta testing, Spector thought that asking people to report symptoms related to Covid-19 was not much different than asking them to report their meals. Using daily symptom information, Zoe’s team can have To help identify new outbreaks at a time when the availability of Covid-19 testing is very limited. After five days of frantic development, Covid Symptom Tracker has been launched. Within another ten days, the app had been downloaded by two million people. Over the course of the pandemic, around 4.7 million people in the UK have installed the app to report their test results and any symptoms.

It was a leap of faithAt the height of using the app, says Spector. 2.4 million people have tracked their symptoms with the Covid Symptom Tracker. Between August 2020 and March 2022, the application was Funded by 5.1 million pounds (about €5.9 million) from the UK Department of Health and Social Care.

However, in early May 2022, Zoe announced in an email to her users that her Covid-19 monitoring app would not be limited to being a service for reporting symptoms related to Covid-19. Covid Symptom Tracker was turning into a Zoe Health studya service that asks people to take ten seconds a day to record their mental and physical health after Covid-19. Users who agree to participate in the study are asked to report their general health – Report symptoms of any kind, from hair loss to mouth sores – and provide daily updates. The company claims that That data will be used forAddressing the most important health problems of our time“, but what It can also be used in development Commercial health, nutrition and lifestyle products (Zoe Also sells nutritional tests and subscriptions to a dedicated energy platform).

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Covid-19 apps tipping point

Zoe isn’t the only Covid-19 app developer to stay away from services designed for the pandemic. In Berlin, a contact tracing app called Luca is reinventing itself as a payment system. Now that the worst phase of the pandemic is behind us, Companies that developed Covid-19 apps are looking for ways to get the most out of users who have downloaded their apps.

Earl Warner

"Devoted bacon guru. Award-winning explorer. Internet junkie. Web lover."

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