Everday, cases of the COVID-19 has risen worldwide. Unfortunately, the situation has gotten worse over time.
People across the globe are still advised to stay at home to prevent the spread of the virus. And if ever you happen to go out of your house, you are still encouraged to practice safe social distancing.
Since most people are at their homes, they only rely on the news about the virus, may it be through their local media or the internet.
And did you know that queries about the COVID-19 have surpassed even those for weather and other news?
Now, Google has made it even easier for users to follow through whatever is happening around the world as it fights one common enemy – novel coronavirus.
Google News gets dedicated COVID-19 hub
Here’s a piece of great news:
In recent weeks, Google has worked to compile data/news about the coronavirus pandemic and piece the information together. Now, there is a new COVID-19 hub in Google News. Meanwhile, Assistant and Podcasts have similar experiences as well.
The new COVID-19 topic can be accessed from the top of the Android and iOS apps, and on the online sidebar too. Pulling together and organizes all the latest news at the global and local levels with two available tabs.
Here is what is under each category:
Local – categories include Local news (available in 10 countries), Economic impact, Science & Research, Healthcare, and Travel.
Global impact – displays the news for Africa, America, Europe, Eastern Mediterranean, South-East Asia, as well as the Western Pacific.
The tech giant is experimenting on how to best fact check information via a dedicated section to avoid the spread of misinformation or “fake news”.
Aside from that, there is also a link to the “latest guidance regarding prevention, symptoms, and treatment from the World Health Organization (WHO) and other authoritative sources.” This is available in 20 countries today and coming to more countries very soon.
Additionally, this experience also powers what appears in the Google Search SOS Alert/Knowledge Panel when searching up for COVID-19. And the tweets from local authorities are also shown.
Assistant and Podcasts with similar experiences
If you ask the Assistant on “what’s the latest news on coronavirus”, the AI will provide you with timely updates. Users can even focus a command by specifying a city.
It is available globally on mobile devices and in over 10 languages for Smart Displays and speakers. Google said that “half of listens to our audio news feature Your News Update have included a coronavirus story from a local news outlet” in the past month.
On the other hand, the recently revamped Explore tab in Podcasts features a dedicated section given the “dozens of new high-quality podcasts about coronavirus.”
Furthermore, Google will also be launching Google Doodles which recognize the doctors, nurses, teachers, janitors, food service workers, and all the front-liners who remain in their jobs and keep providing essential services to those who have been affected by the disease and those at home.
In times of crisis, it is important that we arm ourselves with the right information about what’s going on.