Pan-India app by February

January 06, 2016 12:00 am | Updated September 22, 2016 10:17 pm IST - MANGALURU:

A mobile app providing location-specific information, including availability of fish, in local languages of the coastal States is getting ready for its launch on Google Play by this February.

Nancy J. Anabel, director of M.S. Swaminathan Research Foundation, said that the foundation along with Qualcomm and Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services, had conducted a pilot project covering 5,800 fishermen in Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh and had received a positive feedback.

Ms. Anabel was speaking on the ‘Role of ICT and space technology in transforming fishing communities’ at a national workshop on ‘Adoption of space technology for fisheries’, here on Tuesday. She said the pilot project, a mobile app titled Fish Friend, was launched in 2014 in 18 mobile phones.

A variety of information essential for fishermen were available on the app, which included weather and ocean conditions, potential fishing zones, disaster alerts and the current market price of the fish. The app also would warn the fishermen if they were about to cross the international boundary line in the sea, Ms. Anabel said. “It also has a feature to alert the Coast Guard in case the fishermen are facing any emergency situation. It alerts fishermen about danger zones and areas of sunken ships,” she said.

Ms. Anabel said almost all the fishermen wanted the app be made available in their local languages. The foundation was working in that direction. The apps in Bengali and Marathi languages were almost complete. About 80 per cent of work on the Odia and Gujarati versions was complete too. A pan-India app would thus be possible by next month, she added.

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