Home >News >India >Covid-19: Startups offer tech solutions to help malls, restaurants unlock
Workers sanitise floor of a mall in Bhopal. (Photo: ANI)
Workers sanitise floor of a mall in Bhopal. (Photo: ANI)

Covid-19: Startups offer tech solutions to help malls, restaurants unlock

  • A bunch of startups have launched a slew of solutions to help open public places such as malls and restaurants to ensure hygiene norms, social distancing, contactless parking and shopping

NEW DELHI: In the covid-19 world, shopping in your favourite mall may feel different. On reaching, you will be asked to scan a QR code on an app verified through a one-time password, allowing the mall to track your movement. An online tracking system will also inform you to leave a particular store depending on the number of people, thus, maintaining social distance. The app will also let you pay digitally, ensuring contactless payment.

As malls and restaurants start unlocking amid the covid-19 crisis, this is just one of the technology-driven solutions designed by startups such as Park+, a smart parking solutions provider.

Delhi-based Park+ has tied up with malls to help monitor the entry of customers. The app creates a mall pass on a customer’s phone and enables security guards to help customers check-in and check-out, and check and track their body temperature.

A bunch of startups have launched a slew of solutions to help open public places such as malls, to ensure hygiene norms, contactless parking and shopping.

Staqu Technologies , an artificial intelligence (AI)-based startup is leveraging its video analytics platform, Jarvis, to curb the spread of infection in restaurants, malls and hotels. Staqu said it already has 15 clients for its software that uses existing closed-circuit television (CCTV) and thermal cameras to determine whether social distancing is being maintained and monitor employee body temperature in real-time.

Staqu has tied up with restaurant platform, Dineout, to help the latter’s partner restaurants maintain social distancing norms.

Simply put, Staqu’s video analytics platform will be integrated with cameras installed at Dineout’s partner kitchens to check if safety regulations and precautionary measures are being implemented by the staff. Real-time analytics will help notify violations, prompting the management to take immediate action by tracking the suspect.

Live streaming of the kitchen process will also be available to end-customers to assure them of hygiene compliance and sanitisation standard, boosting their confidence and increasing footfall.

Jarvis will also monitor areas for hand wash, mopping/cleaning, social distancing, crowding, mask compliance and contact tracing.

“Integrating Jarvis in Dineout’s existing framework will help restaurants and food aggregators safely navigate through the crisis and win customers back as business turns new leafs in the unlock," said Atul Rai, co-founder and chief executive officer (CEO), Staqu.

Rai is also talking to malls and hotels to offer them his covid-19 suite of offerings that includes identification of the virus, suspect tracing, personal protective equipment (PPE) monitoring, security, safety, hygiene analytics and people analytics.

The AI platform will be able to send real-time alerts to check how many people enter a lift, whether they wear masks and maintain proper social distance.

“At present, we are aiming metro cities, starting with Delhi-NCR (national capital region). We will also target tier-1 and tier-2 cities in the coming years," Rai added.

Contactless parking will also be possible through the Park+ app. A user has to enter the vehicle details and will be shown a parking fee that he or she can pay using a digital payment option. Once the payment is made, the information with vehicle details get passed to the POS device, which the guard at the parking exit gate carries. When the user comes with their car, the guard checks all the information in his POS and then allows the user to exit the mall. Users can also book mall parking in advance using the Park+ app.

“We are live at Brookefields, Coimbatore and will be live soon in malls in Delhi, Mumbai and Bhopal. We are in talks with other metros too. The cost of our services is 2 lakh per annum," said Amit Lakhotia, co-founder of Park+.

Another startup, Magneto CleanTech, is working to air sanitise centrally air-conditioned malls. Besides sanitising surfaces, it is critical for spaces such as shopping malls to sanitise the air as the virus may be airborne and can spread faster in an air-conditioned environment, said founder and CEO Himanshu Agarwal.

The filter-less Magnetic Air Purification and Ultraviolet (UVGI) technology, based on the 'Trap & Kill' process, thoroughly decontaminates indoor air by killing over 90% of airborne viruses and infections and can be integrated with any air-conditioning system.

The firm is working with a few shopping malls in Delhi-NCR.

“...The cost of this solution depends on factors like the kind and capacity of air-conditioning, ventilation provision, etc. However, the average cost is not a dent on our customers, which is also why we are seeing an exponential surge in demand," Agarwal said.

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