One of the deadliest earthquakes in recent history hit Nepal over the weekend, and the death toll continues to rise every day. Countries around the world have joined in on the rescue operations, and tech companies too are doing their part. Here s what the likes of Google, Facebook, Twitter, Microsoft, Line, Paytm, Viber and Qualcomm among others are doing in the aftermath of the Nepal earthquake. Also Read - New avatar of Google Chrome’s offline dinosaur game: How you can playAlso Read - Internet down: Zomato, Paytm, Disney+ Hotstar, Amazon, Myntra, many other global services suffered massive outage
Google Also Read - Xbox Series X restock in India possible by early August, no news on Series S
Google has again launched the People Finder web-app, which will help people find their missing friends or relatives. Google had launched this tool during the Boston Marathon bombing and the Uttarakhand floods in June. The tool is very easy to use, with only two buttons on the homepage one to find a missing person and the other to share information on some person. If you need to search for someone, you click on the green box and any information relating to that person will show up on the results.
Furthermore, Google has pledged $1 million to the relief efforts in Nepal, as well as an additional $500,000 in employee gift-matching. It has also dropped Google Voice call rates from 19 cents to only a cent.
Facebook had introduced the Safety Check feature last year, and has put it to use in the aftermath of the Nepal earthquake. If Facebook finds that you are in the disaster struck area, it will send you a notification asking if you re safe. The site will determine your location by looking at the city you have listed in your profile, your last location through Nearby Friends or the city where you are using the Internet. Once you let Facebook know that you are safe, it will automatically generate an update in your News Feed story to let your friends know that you are safe. If you don t happen to have a smartphone on you, your friends can also mark you as safe.
Furthermore, the social giant has also launched Nepal Earthquake support. It encourages users to donate to the International Medical Corps, and it will match those donations. In total, the company plans on donating up to $2 million for relief efforts.
Twitter has been a great support system in this scenario. Twitter along with @InCrisesRelief came out with complete details of What, Where & How of #NepalQuakeRelief donations. @InCrisesRelief is helping Nepal Government collect relief materials for earthquake victims. Additionally, users in Nepal too are putting up real-time updates on the situation there.
Microsoft has pitched in by announcing free Skype calls to landlines and mobiles in and out of Nepal. Additionally, it has also pledged to donate $1 million in cash, technology, and services to assist in the relief efforts.
Paytm is pitching in with its donations for the government s Nepal relief fund. Similar to Facebook, the company will pitch in with its own donation for every rupee donated by one of its users. So for instance if you donate Rs 100, Paytm too will pitch in with Rs 100 to the relief fund.
Qualcomm has made a contribution of Rs 2.2 crore to Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund.
Apple has announced a partnership with American Red Cross, and is encouraging users to donate via iTunes.
Tim Cook (@tim_cook) April 26, 2015
The messaging app has launched a set of charity stickers called Pray for Nepal. The proceeds from users buying this sticker pack will go to Japan s Red Cross Society s relief fund. The fund, as you would expect, will be used in relief operations in Nepal.
Much like Microsoft, Viber too has made calling using the service free. For 48 hours, the company seethed off Viber Out billing, so users can make free calls to mobiles and landlines.
From today @Ncell zero rate mobile data for Viber app users in Nepal. We continue to monitor Viber usage in the region to offer our support
UPDATE: To suit local demand we will continue to offer free Viber Out calls within Nepal. Viber to Viber calls are always free
Viber (@Viber) April 28, 2015
Viber (@Viber) April 28, 2015
Telecom operators too have pitched in to do their part. Most of them have cut call rates to the disaster-affected regions, while some have made the calls free as well. The likes of BSNL and MTNL, as well as Airtel and Idea Cellular have announced reduction in charges or made free calls to Nepal. Tata Docomo has slashed call rates to 1p/s between April 26 and 28. Vodafone has slashed call rates to Nepal to Re 1 per minute from the regular call rate of Rs 12 per minute.