Startups step up to fight COVID-19


With India yet to see the peak of the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic, which has crippled the country’s healthcare system, several startups are coming forward to help.

Slang Labs has created a free-of-cost voice-enabled tool to get COVID-19-related details. The multilingual voice assistant tool can be added to any COVID-19-related website to fetch information such as the availability of oxygen beds, ICU, plasma, etc. 

With scientists warning of a possible third wave, vaccines seem to be the only way to avoid another disastrous situation.

Paytm announced the launch of COVID-19 Vaccine Finder to help people track vaccine slot availability in real-time across 780 districts of India.

The platform enables people to check the availability of vaccination slots as per PIN codes or district details, along with the age group. If no slots are available, users can also opt to receive real-time automated alerts once a slot frees up.

Meanwhile, foodtech platform Swiggy will be prioritising deliveries through its hyperlocal delivery vertical, Genie, to ferry essentials such as over the counter (OTC) medicines, oximeters, and thermometers. It will also deliver home-cooked meals, care packages, and grocery.

Read about how the Indian startup ecosystem is battling the second wave of COVID-19 here.

Here are some useful tools and links that can help you find the nearest vaccine centres in real-time.

The Interview

YourStory has teamed up with Project StepOne for CleanTheAir series to spread accurate information related to combating the COVID-19 pandemic. Dr Yash Saxena and Raghavendra Prasad TS, Founder, Project StepOne talk about their relief efforts and how the second wave is different from the first wave. 

Editor’s Pick: App Fridays

To help India battle the devastating second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, apps and services are helping people by providing necessary and critical information. Launched by IIT Delhi alumni, non-profit web app CovRelief helps the families of COVID-19 patients with verified leads on various resources, provides live tracking of vacant beds, oxygen availability, plasma, food, helpline information, and more. Read more.

Startup Spotlight

Preparing exam road map for UPSC aspirants

While preparing for UPSC exams, Nishant Shukla realised that the one common difficulty faced by aspirants was in identifying weak areas amid the huge syllabus. Along with Sushant Shukla, Ishan Malviya, and Thribhuvan HL, he started Examarly to handhold UPSC aspirants throughout the exam preparation by making personalised plans that help them navigate the vast available content. Read more.

News & Updates

  • “It’s heartbreaking to see COVID(-19) surging in places like India, Brazil, and many others around the world. If you live in one of these places, please focus on taking care of yourselves and your loved ones right now. We are here to support however we can,” Google CEO Sundar Pichai told employees in an email. He also announced that Google will be moving to a more flexible work week and a hybrid working model.

  • South Korea’s Krafton will launch Battlegrounds Mobile India, a successor to the popular mobile game PUBG, which was blocked by the Indian government last year. In September 2020, the government blocked 118 mobile applications, terming them prejudicial to the sovereignty, integrity, and defence of the nation. 

Before you go, stay inspired with… 

“This past year hasn’t been easy for anyone and many Googlers are still suffering as the pandemic wears on. We will get through it — together.”

Sundar Pichai, CEO, Google

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