Sickweather is a rather interesting app that has been available in the Play Store for quite some time now, and contrary to what you may think based on its name, this is not a weather app. Sickweather app actually comes with a bunch of algorithms which scan social networks and third party data sources for indicators of illness, which allows you to check for the chance of sickness, as you would check for weather, hence its name. The company says that thousands of people update their social media sites on a daily basis with news regarding their own sickness, or sickness of someone they know, and the company is talking about your regular, contagious diseases, such as flu, chickenpox, and so on. When they make such info publicly available, and that info contains location info, Sickweather is able to take note of it, and its algorithms map it down. You can imagine how much such data can be collected this way.
Sickweather actually allows its members and 3rd party partners to report directly to its “map”, and submit anonymously via the mobile app. If a user of the app reports symptoms or illnesses that the app is not tracking, that info will be processed by the app’s algorithm, and automatically make suggestions for expanding the app’s tracking capabilities. Sickweather’s data is “regularly correlated and validated against available data from the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), point-of-sale data for related medications, and demographics and census data”, says the company. The company also says that advanced machine learning models are used to measure the rate of real-time input compared to the company’s archived data (which dates back to 2011), in order to predict the rate of illnesses up to 15 weeks in advance. The company actually claims that this model has the accuracy of 91-percent, which is quite high.
Now, as far as the design of the app is concerned, it’s what you’d expect out of a modern Android application, though it doesn’t really follow Google’s Material Design guidelines, at least not all the way. You will find a number of tabs on the bottom of the display, including Home, Family, Report, Alerts, and Groups, while the “Call Doctor” option is included in the top-right corner of the app’s UI.
Background: This application has been available in the Play Store for quite some time now, and we’re currently looking at version 2.3.0 of the application. You will need Android 4.4+ in order to run this app, and the app weighs 13MB. This application has been downloaded over 100,000 times thus far, and its rating is not exactly the best in the Play Store, as it currently holds a 3.7-star rating. This rating has to do with some bugs, it seems, as users are having issues using the app in general it seems, the company had some server-side errors recently, and received quite a few negative feedback regarding that, so the rating may not exactly reflect the real quality of the app itself.
Impact: This is the first app of this kind that we’ve stumbled upon, and it’s hard to deny that it’s innovative. Having such info at hand may prevent you from getting sick at some point, as the company processes a lot of data in order to provide its users with the most accurate info possible. This application is completely free to use, and if you’d like to give it a go, a link has been included down below.