Alphabet Inc’s Google has published charts showing how the coronavirus has brought hard-hit Italy to a standstill, led to runs on grocery stores around the world and prompted a stark drop in going-out between Mardi Gras and St. Patrick’s Day.
The analysis of location data from billions of Google users’ phones is the largest public dataset available to help health authorities assess if people are abiding with shelter-in-place and similar orders issued across the world to rein in the virus.
Europe's north-south lockdown divide revealed by Google data
Italy and Spain, the two European countries hardest hit by the new coronavirus, have enforced the most drastic lockdowns to curb the pandemic but one country, Sweden, stands out for allowing life to go on much as before, Google data show.
An analysis of smartphone location data by the U.S. search engine giant showed that visits to shops, parks or railway stations fell steeply in most European countries between Feb. 16 and March 29 as governments sought to slow the explosive spread of the COVID-19 disease.