apple maps coronavirus social distancing

  • Apple just released a new tool to show how effectively people are socially distancing across the globe.
  • The tool gathers location data from Apple Maps users to glean trends in people’s movements.
  • Data can be sorted by country, state, or city and shows a breakdown of how many people are driving, walking, or using public transit.

Apple released a new tool on Tuesday to show how many people in a region are reducing their movements amid the coronavirus outbreak.

Apple’s tool gathers anonymized data from Apple Maps users to show trends in movement. Google has released a similar tool using Google Maps and Android data, and Facebook has developed a movement tool that it makes available only to health agencies.

Apple’s mobility tracker lets you choose a location and see how well people there are social distancing. Hundreds of millions of people across the globe have been advised by governments to stay home to reduce the spread of COVID-19, the illness caused by the coronavirus.

The tool complements a new contact-tracing technology pioneered by Apple and Google that will use Bluetooth on smartphones to alert people when they’ve come in contact with someone with COVID-19 — however, that technology won’t be available for months.

Here’s a breakdown of how Apple’s new mobility-tracking tool works.

The tool lets you filter data by country, providing a breakdown of how much less people there have been driving, walking, and taking transit in the past month.

apple mobility report

Apple also breaks down mobility data for some major cities, including San Francisco.

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Comparing countries shows how early each nation enforced social-distancing measures and where they’ve been the most effective.

apple maps coronavirus social distancing

Apple also published a full spreadsheet containing the raw data underlying the tool.

apple maps

Apple insists that the location data is anonymized to protect users’ privacy.

You can access the raw data here.

As reported by Business Insider