Google data show: This is how our life has changed through social distancing. For a few weeks now, we have kept our contacts to a minimum to slow the spread of the coronavirus. This has noticeable effects on many areas of public life.
Google has evaluated various data for its overview and made it available for Germany. For various areas, the respective counts show the development from mid-February to the end of March 2020. According to the company, the area most affected by social distancing is “Retail & Recreation”, ie “Retail and Recreation”. There has been a total decline of 77 percent in the period mentioned – facilities such as shops, hotels, cinemas and other leisure facilities are suffering very badly from the consequences of the corona virus.
Significantly fewer people on the move
Of course, the fact that people stay at home is also noticeable in traffic. According to Google, 68 percent fewer people are now at public stops in Germany than in mid-February. Grocery stores and pharmacies are also badly affected, with a decline of 51 percent.
The decline in public parks is somewhat less pronounced: According to Google, at the end of March there are also only half as many people as usual. However, work is carried out despite the corona virus: the decline in jobs is apparently around 40 percent. In contrast, there is an upward trend in residential buildings: here, the search engine giant has registered an increase of 11 percent.
Google is not alone
Basically, there is currently a great general interest in the location data of users. For example, many mobile phone companies have submitted anonymized data to the European Commission. In this way, the spread of the coronavirus should be better examined. Nevertheless, there are also concerns that the crisis is being used as a pretext to collect and evaluate mass personal data.
Are you bored in your own four walls? We have put together a few tips on how you can stay in (digital) contact with your friends and relatives despite social distancing. Elsewhere we have collected general information, tickers and live maps for the corona virus for you.