Coronavirus pandemic has shaken up everyone around the world and given rise to massive scare and anxiety. Amid all the chaos, an app that enables people to track their symptoms of COVID-19 has increasingly become popular in a very short period of time.
According to BBC, the app that was developed by nutrition company Zoe, has reportedly been downloaded hundreds of thousands of times so far. Among many other such apps, the Covid Symptom Tracker app is reportedly the third most popular app in UK's Apple App store and second in Google Play's new releases. Unfortunately, the app is only available to UK users. However, the app is scheduled to be launched in the US, which is now the place of most reported cases of COVID-19, on Thursday.
The app was developed in just three days by researchers at Guy's and St Thomas' hospitals and King's College London university, alongside UK's nutrition company Zoe. So far, the app has been downloaded 750,000 downloads. Meanwhile, experts are aiming at a million downloads in 24 hours.
The app is said to be the innovation Zoe's Tim Spector, who is also a professor of genetic epidemiology at King's College, London. The app aims to collect the data that can be used by the researchers, NHS workers, scientists to slow down the outbreak.
"I was rather depressed as they were shutting down everything in the university and I thought that twins are the best studied people in the country, so how can we use that information in this crisis?" Spector told the publication.
"We are hoping to get to one million downloads by the end of the day and we will also be ready to release data by then for the NHS, data modellers and researchers to play with," he added.
As per the report, the professor believes that this app can potentially help the NHS by understanding how fast the virus spreads in various parts of the country, improve the understanding of the symptoms, enable us to distinguish between the symptoms of common cold and COVID-19, and explain why some people are experiencing mild symptoms, while others are severely impacted.
Coronavirus outbreak began in January in China. Gradually, it spread across most of the countries in the world. So far, there have been 537,042 cases and 24,110 deaths reported. Meanwhile, the UK has 11,813 confirmed cases and 1,296 deaths.