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INNOVATION DURING COVID-19 OUTBREAK

March 28, 2020 3:07 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Online medical care, medical supplies, pharmaceuticals, insurance, and health-related industries

During the epidemic, online medical platforms, like AliHealth and Tencent HealthCare, have provided free online diagnostic services for citizens. This helps to screen out suspected COVID-19 patients from common cold patients, alleviate the shortage of offline medical resources, reduce the cross-infection risks caused by human contact, and enable more citizens to experience online medical treatment.

The outbreak also stimulates the growth of telemedicine.

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E-commerce

To avoid being infected by the COVID-19 virus, consumers who have formed the habit of online shopping are becoming more likely to order food and choose daily necessities and fresh food online instead of going to an offline supermarket. Fresh food e-commerce is seeing an explosive growth. Consumer demand for the following products has also increased significantly:

  • Disinfection cabinet;
  • Dishwasher;
  • Sweeping robot;
  • Auto wash phone;
  • Ultraviolet disinfection lamp; and
  • High-quality imported food and health care products.

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Online entertainment

The “home economy,” indirectly driven by the COVID-19 outbreak, not only boosted online shopping but also promoted online games and live webcast. This can be seen from the comparison of the turnover of Tencent’s hit game ‘Honor of King’ – in 2020, the turnover of ‘Honor of King’ on the Chinese New Year Eve was around RMB 2 billion (US$286 million), while in 2019, the number was RMB 1.3 billion (US$186 million). 

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Online education

As schools will start later, they have started to introduce online teaching and clock-in programs for students so as not to delay the teaching schedule. 

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Telecommuting related industries

This will facilitate the growth of the telecommuting related industries, including remote office tools, such as cloud services, voice over internet protocol (VoIP), web video conferencing, multi-person collaboration platform, and digital services, as well as IT staff remote services.

Robot sellers see the coronavirus as a chance to broadcast their bots’ abilities

Some robots are lending a helping hand in the battle against the coronavirus, facilitating conversation between infected patients and hospital staff and delivering necessities, including medication. But at least one robot vendor has used the outbreak to push the abilities of its “service robot,” an automaton that can be programmed to answer questions, quiz people on their health, and give tours.

Companies want to cash in on putting thermal scanning everywhere

In response to the coronavirus outbreak, some companies are moving quickly to integrate or advertise their existing thermal imaging capabilities. The technology scans a person from afar and estimates what their temperature is, so some think these systems could spot fevers and ultimately infected persons. We’ve already seen this integrated into facial recognition cameras in China, but now it’s showing up elsewhere. 

The coronavirus is motivating a surge in high-tech disinfectant devices

The novel coronavirus has had some consumers looking for tools to disinfect their surrounding areas, including high-tech electrostatic spray guns. While you might normally have disinfectant sprayed from a bottle, these types of guns make use of charged particles to ensure that a substance fully covers a surface.

Some companies are now marketing these guns in response to the coronavirus. A couple of them — one called Emist and another called EFS Clean — are being used in health care facilities in Singapore and by school officials in Utah. One person on LinkedIn showed how he used one to disinfect his seat on an airplane

Coronavirus-inspired products are a reminder that some companies always stand to benefit during a global crisis. In the case of this current pandemic, Netflix will entertain people stuck at home, and video platforms like Zoom will power businesses whose work can be done remotely. Meanwhile, all sort of disinfectant brands, like Clorox and Purell, will benefit from companies and customers eager to stay clean and cut down on the spread of the virus.

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Resources for Canada Covid-19 for Small Businesses:

Canada

  • Wage subsidy: 75% wage subsidy for qualifying businesses, for up to 3 months, retroactive to March 15, 2020.
  • Emergency benefit: Taxable benefit of $2,000 a month for up to 4 months to workers who must stop working due to COVID-19 and do not have access to paid leave, those who are sick with COVID-19, those taking care of a sick family member, and self-employed individuals, including contract workers.
  • Interest-free loans: Up to $40,000 in interest-free loans to small businesses and not-for-profit companies.
  • Defer tax filing: Businesses can defer the payment of any income tax amounts that become owing on or after today and before September 2020. The government will defer GST, HST, and customs duties until June 30, 2020.
  • Small Business Loan: Low-interest loans up to $2 million if your business has been generating revenues for at least 24 months.
  • Purchase order financing: Cover up to 90% of the purchase order amount to ease cash flow to your suppliers.
  • Provincial:
    • British Columbia: A one-time $1,000 payment if you’ve lost income because of COVID-19.
    • Saskatchewan: Three-month deferral to remit PST
    • Quebec: Low-interest loans and loan guarantees of at least $50,000 
    • Nova Scotia: Defer payments until June 30 for all government loans and small business renewal fees

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