In the past year or so, multiple tech companies have integrated tooling in their software to help customers stay safe during the ongoing pandemic. One such organization is Apple, which has been rolling out multiple features related to curbing the spread of COVID-19. Back in July 2020, Apple Maps began to notify users to self-quarantine if they've recently traveled internationally. Now, the software has been updated to show locations of COVID-19 vaccination centers in the US.
Data for vaccination centers comes from VaccineFinder, which is a free online service developed by the Boston Children's Hospital. It currently shows information about 20,000 vaccination locations across the US, and this data has now been integrated with Apple Maps. Apple plans to add more locations in the coming weeks.
Apple Maps users can simply search for vaccination centers by using the search bar functionality or asking Siri. Placecards for locations will show other information such as operating hours, website, and contact number as well. Healthcare providers and businesses not registered with VaccineFinder also have the opportunity to register with Apple in order to have their information shown in Maps.
This move is the latest in Apple's efforts to assist users in these trying times. Over the past few months, it has added multiple features to Maps including showing COVID-19 testing locations in various countries, allowing businesses to convey pandemic-related instructions, and expanding Siri's knowledge base to include information about takeouts, outdoor dining, and general guidance related to the pandemic.