Financial Times has been sparse on the details of the app mentioned herein. however, one thing that caught my eye (and emphasis is mine):
Mr Datoo’s team, comprising colleagues from D2, University of Surrey academics and KroniKare, worked on a health monitoring app called OUALD (“opening up after lockdown”) for use in buildings where many people normally crowd together, such as shopping centres or universities.Using thermal imaging technology that KroniKare had already developed, the idea is to help people navigate busy spaces by raising an alert through the app when anyone in the vicinity shows symptoms.
The next step is to establish a protocol for how this data would be managed.Doctors add a dose of medical insight to FT coronavirus hackathon | Financial Times
Mobile apps usually “fight” for the screen real estate. It requires significant resources to “market” them and require complex UI to make them relevant to keep it engaged.
The idea is laudatory but the grant review committees should ponder over the usage metrics and other granular data on how the application would be used. It is a sum of many moving parts- the SDK’s, app permissions, ongoing relevance and ultimately what would happen once the “pandemic is declared to have ended”.
Data permissions and privacy should be thought of first rather than an after thought by the “academicians”.