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Alphabet (GOOGL) Tracks Coronavirus Cases Using Location Data – Zacks.com


Alphabet Inc.‘s (GOOGL Free Report) Google is leaving no stone unturned to bolster initiatives to help the society in fighting the coronavirus pandemic.

The company recently collaborated with researchers from the University of Southampton in the U.K. to help people track the spread of coronavirus using anonymized and aggregated location data.

Google’s location-enabled apps such as Google Maps are collecting location data, which is then shared with the researchers in an aggregated and anonymized format to monitor people’s movements. The collected data tracks movement trends over a time period in various places including groceries and pharmacies, parks, transit stations, workplaces, as well as residential locations.

The data will help researchers to better analyze the effectiveness of social distancing and evaluate the pandemic’s spread. It would help the public health policy officials in taking critical decisions, thereby helping them to manage COVID-19 in a far better way.

Markedly, the coronavirus crisis is set to revolutionize the healthcare sector. Digital healthcare is becoming the need of the hour. Assessment and monitoring of patients remotely, and the use of AI-driven trackers are expected to gain momentum in the days ahead.

In this backdrop, Google’s efforts to combat the COVID-19 outbreak are expected to boost investor confidence.

Alphabet Inc. Price and Consensus

 

Major Tech Giants Roll Out COVID-19 Trackers

Google is the latest tech giant to use its mobile tracking data in an effort to curb the spread of the global pandemic.

Microsoft (MSFT Free Report) Bing recently launched an interactive map that provides information on the spread of coronavirus. The map contains details about the number of cases per country, divided into the number of currently active cases, recovered cases and fatal cases. U.S. citizens can view state-by-state information.

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Also, the iPhone-maker, Apple (AAPL Free Report) rolled out a separate section for its Apple News app that covers coronavirus-related news stories and articles from verified publishers. The section will help readers stay updated and is expected to prevent the spread of misinformation regarding the outbreak.

We believe Google and other tech giants are well poised to capitalize on the emerging demand for overhaul of the healthcare industry, triggered by the ongoing coronavirus crisis.

Google’s Growing Endeavors

Alphabet has been making all the necessary efforts to combat this situation. Its health-care division called Verily recently launched a COVID-19 screening and testing website under Project Baseline.

Notably, this particular site offers screening and potential free testing of coronavirus. The website requires users to begin with the eligibility questionnaire. Further, it asks users willing users to take the test, sign a COVID-19 Public Health authorization form that allows Verily to collect their information required for the screening process.

Currently, the project is limited to California residents with special focus on Santa Clara and San Mateo counties. Notably, Verily is in talks with the State of California to further expand the project to other counties.

Per Bloomberg, Verily has successfully conducted tests for around 20 people on the very first day of COVID-19 screening.

In addition, Alphabet’s search division Google is striving to provide coronavirus-related information that will comprise symptoms, risk factors and testing, among others, via another website that is currently at a developing stage.

We believe all these endeavors will continue to drive customer momentum and strengthen its competitive position against other companies.

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Zacks Rank & Stock to Consider

Currently, Alphabet carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). A better-ranked stock in the broader technology sector is Stamps.com Inc. (STMP Free Report) , sporting a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Long-term earnings growth for Stamps.com is currently projected at 15%.

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