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Gainesville teen creates COVID-19 safety rating app

Users grade businesses on adherence to virus-related health & safety guidelines

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – A new app, designed by a 16-year-old Gainesville student, will allow users to rate how restaurants, shops and other businesses are following COVID-19 safety guidelines.

Customers are able to use the Prober app to grade businesses on five categories: social distancing, masks/gloves worn by staff, cleanliness, hygiene material and curbside pickup.

This screenshot shows the homepage of the Prober App version 1.2 (Copyright 2020 by WJXT News4Jax - All rights reserved.)

“First, I was wondering, ‘How are people going to adjust to businesses reopening? How would they find which places are safe?'" said the app’s creator, Anish Jha. "Because, eventually, the economy is going to have to reopen, and at the current pace, it doesn’t look like it’s going away soon.”

Users are able to rate the establishments on a one-to-five scale for each category, and other users are then able to see the spot’s overall score.

This screenshot shows the rating page of the Prober App version 1.2. (Copyright 2020 by WJXT News4Jax - All rights reserved.)

“This app is oriented for people who are conscious about their health and the whole point of this is to monitor businesses that aren’t,” Jha said. “We’re allowing people who are taking the necessary precautions to monitor businesses, and by doing that, they monitor the people who aren’t, so it’s a triangle in the sense of keeping people in check.”

The latest version of the app was launched Saturday, and as of the publication of this article four days later, has had nearly 500 downloads.

Anish Jha, 16, a Gainesville student, created the 'Prober' app which allows users to rate the COVID-19 precautions taken by businesses and other establishments. (Copyright 2020 by WJXT News4Jax - All rights reserved.)

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