A free app that helps people observe social distancing to slow the spread of coronavirus launched in April.
Devised by Lanterne, a UK start-up company supported by ESA, it uses satellite data and artificial intelligence technologies to identify where people are congregating anywhere in the world.
People who need to leave home to go to the supermarket or the pharmacy can check before they depart whether the shops are becoming crowded. If there are too many people, they can delay their trip until its less busy or switch to less-crowded shops nearby.
The “Crowdless” app uses anonymised existing data sources, such as Google Maps and Google Places data, that track the movements of mobile devices. It combines this information with crowd-sourced data by asking the user to confirm whether or not the location is busy.