A crowd-sourced app, with additional data from Google, tells users which stores are experiencing long queues and high traffic
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Spotted: As most people have experienced first-hand, the COVID-19 pandemic has led to long lines and long waits at supermarkets and grocery stores around the world. Unfortunately, this is more than an inconvenience, as the increased exposure to other people can increase the risk of catching the virus. Startup LineScouts has developed an app that aims to help by notifying people of the congestion they can expect at their local store.
LineScouts produces an aggregate “busyness score” based on data from Google and crowd-sourced reports. The queues are then given a traffic-light rating – red for very busy, yellow for busy, green for light traffic and purple if there is no data. Users can help by reporting on the conditions at their local store.
LineScouts was developed at d.labs, a lean innovation studio based in London and Ljubljana, Slovenia. D.labs specialises in incubating digital products to the point where they are ready to scale up market-tested products and services. Unlike previous products put out by the lab, however, LineScouts was rushed to market, in order to help people as soon as possible.
As the pandemic continues, a number of apps have been developed to help make social distancing easier and safer. At Springwise, we have highlighted innovations such as a restaurant reservation platform that has pivoted to allow grocery shoppers to reserve slots and a platform that matches recently unemployed workers with job opportunities.