Good morning, here’s your Thursday morning briefing. Look out for these three things happening around the world today.

UK’s contact-tracing app pilot begins

As of today, residents of the Isle of Wight will be able to download the NHS’ coronavirus contact-tracing app as the UK’s pilot gets underway.

The Covid-19 app is part of the UK government’s test, track and trace programme and will see people self-report symptoms through the app. The app uses low energy Bluetooth to detect other nearby app users and anonymously notifies those that have come into close contact with a person displaying Covid-19 symptoms.

Privacy and security experts have raised concerns about the UK’s approach, which will see the NHS store data in a central location. Most countries have opted for a decentralised version supported by Google and Apple, which sees data stored on people’s phones. NHS and council staff on the island have had access to the app since Tuesday.

Uber reports Q1 earnings

Ride-hailing firm Uber will report its earnings for the first quarter of 2020 today when markets close.

The results are expected to show a sharp fall in ride volume because of the coronavirus pandemic. However, revenue from its food delivery arm, Uber Eats, is expected to have been boosted by a rise in online food orders thanks to lockdown measures.

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By GlobalData

Uber, which went public last May, had previously eyed profitability by 2021 but withdrew that guidance this April. It plans to lay off about 20% of its staff as it seeks to cut back its losses.

Experts share insights on coronavirus stats with MPs

Health experts and leading statisticians will share insights with the UK government’s Science and Technology Committee about the coronavirus pandemic.

The evidence session will see the experts quizzed on the significance of the R (reproduction) value, the impact social distancing has had on reducing the rate of infection and how data from the new NHS contact-tracing app can be used.

The session will take place virtually and be broken into two parts. In the first, at 2:30pm, national statistician professor sir Ian Diamond and professor of infectious disease modelling at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine Professor John Edmunds will answer MPs questions. The second, at 3.30pm, includes chair of the Department of International Health at Johns Hopkins University professor David Peters and Winton Professor of the Public Understanding of Risk at Faculty of Maths, University of Cambridge professor sir David Spiegelhalter.

Wednesday’s Highlights


Healthcare organisations are being targeted by state-backed hackers, governments warn

Disney+ subscriber boost a silver lining in mixed Q2 earnings

Bitcoin can protect investors against inflation