How technology has been used in different industries during COVID-19
The pandemic has changed our lives. Working from home, social distancing, and mask-wearing are the new norm. The nature of businesses either hibernated or adapted to newer plans and policies. They have also adapted to an increased use of technology. How have these industries used technology during COVID?
Below I listed a summary of my research based on this question:
Consultations - Communicating through technology and keeping people at home is a great alternative to a mass rush into the hospital for acute versions of the virus.
Diagnostics and Monitoring - Smart products such as the Kinsa thermometer collects data to create a map that displays the spikes of fevers across the U.S as the virus spread. The Apple Watch have also helped monitor elderly patients with chronic diseases during the pandemic.
Robot Assistance - Robots can be used to disinfect devices, clean hospitals and deliver medicine, all of which give healthcare workers more time to treat their patients.
Multiple e-learning startups specializing in online course content have reported substantial growth in interest in their products in the wake of Covid-19. Distant learning technologies have encouraged the use of virtual reality, augmented reality, and 3D printing.
IT - Websites and Apps:
COVID Information and FAQs are now more prevalent on every business. Uber's response, for example, requires drivers to take selfies to prove they are wearing masks, whereas passengers will not because the company is using preexisting technology that uses selfies to verify drivers’ identities. This is a safety effort that slightly changes the experience of using the app.
On websites, designers are positioning COVID-19 content on intranets all in one place and are making it easy to find and consume. This includes banners on the homepage the advertises and links to a COVID-19-related section, or a page that houses short descriptions and links to all content related to COVID-19.
Food and Shopping:
Although it's already implemented pre-covid, contactless payments are more relevant now than ever. According to Appriss Retail President, “Consumers appear to be making a conscious choice to use payment forms that are convenient and allow them to avoid touching a keypad or handling money.”
Beyond the in-person experience, the growing investment toward online retail has been unexpected. Although implemented in 2016, Saks Fifth Avenue's personal online shopping service allows brand associates to create boutique pages for customers with hand-selected merchandise.
Virtual performances on streaming platforms and Youtube is the new norm. Maybe a drive-in concert now and then. It's quite ironic that back then, some people record a live concert on their phones instead of experiencing the show, and now people are watching streamed concerts, yet literally miss the experience being in a live concert.
Your face is your passport. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, airports were already investing in touchless technology to speed up the boarding experience. Now, those same non-contact tools might also prevent virus transmission. Airports are also opting for walk-through thermal-screening cameras, which operate by detecting heat emanating from a person’s body and then estimating its core temperature.
Why it matters in UX?
UX evolves as the way people interact with technology evolves. The pandemic gave designers new challenges. With an increase in the use of screens, people would want to finish a task easily, similar to how they used to do it (ie paying cash, in-person learning..). In Don Norman's book, the Design of Everyday Things, he asks the readers, "Who can predict what new companies will arise, what existing companies will disappear, and what new technologies will arise in the next twenty-five years?"
See ya, friend!