A group of 20 Indian techies built a crowdsourced platform for groceries within a week

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A group of 20 Indian techies built a crowdsourced platform for groceries within a week
  • Indian techies across reputed organizations in Bengaluru, and even across borders in Vancouver, Canada got together to build CovidMaps.
  • CovidMaps is a crowdsourced platform with information regarding the stores near you, list of things available, operational timings and more.
  • A group of over 20 techies are working on the project as a not for profit initiative.
Ever since the coronavirus lockdown, you are suddenly aware of the neighbourhood grocery stores, their products and shortcuts to get there. But many times you’re left disappointed as they have run out of items you need the most.

Across metropolitan cities, grocery stores bare an empty look with panic buying and patchy supply from wholesalers. So, you end up moving from one store to another in the search of milk, bread and more.

But a group of techies decided that this isn’t a problem they can’t solve. Indian techies across reputed organizations in Bengaluru, and even across borders in Vancouver, Canada got together to build CovidMaps – a crowdsourced platform with information regarding the stores near you, list of things available, operational timings and more.

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A group of 20 Indian techies built a crowdsourced platform for groceries within a week

And all of this information is almost instantly updated by users themselves. A group of over 20 techies are working on the project as a not-for-profit initiative.

“Given the whole lockdown situation, the supply chain of these stores have been impacted. Stores are now operating with limited capacity or they are out of stock. There’s unpredictability in terms of how to get your essentials. As a user, people are also looking for safety markers – masks are compulsory in the store, and so is maintaining distance,” said Sandeep Rao, one of the tech architects behind CovidMaps, who works out of Vancouver.

CovidMaps is currently live in Mumbai, Bengaluru, Pune, Chennai, Hyderabad and Delhi, as well as Vancouver.
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They already partnered with a popular delivery app Dunzo. Its users can check what’s available in a store through CovidMaps and place an order.

A group of 20 Indian techies built a crowdsourced platform for groceries within a week

The group started working on it as soon as the lockdown was announced, and it went live recently. “In two weeks, we have over 50,000 users with over 5000-6000 users visiting the webpage every day,” said Rao.

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They also received organic attention on social media. Cricket commentator Harsha Bhogle, comedian Atul Khatri and more tweeted about CovidMaps.

Given the interest around grocery and the need for essential supplies, many established companies too started listing stores on their platforms.

Google has also started listing grocery stores. Digital payments platform PhonePe too launched a ‘Stores’ feature, which will show you a listing of stores nearby and if they are delivering.

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