Crypto-based emergency program Guardian Circle has seen a gigantic surge in monthly downloads due to the coronavirus crisis.
According to data given by the project to Cointelegraph, over 5150 new users downloaded the program in March. That represents monthly development of 2582percent for the three year old app, which had fought to draw attention in peacetime. In January, a little over 300 new users signed up.
But while the current crisis has seen the program’s popularity increase, it’s also threatening the project’s future.
What is Guardian Circle?
The official website explains the program helps create a micro-economy around a crisis response in places where it is needed most. Functions include panic buttons, collision detection, voice ports and heart rate monitors,amongst others, allowing personal security and medical response to control a geo-fenced service area too. Users are incentivised with advantages in the cryptocurrency $GUARD.
Mark Jeffrey, co-founder and CEO of Guardian Circle, told Cointelegraph:
“Up until COVID-19, our marketing challenge had always been: ‘How do we get users to think about a future crisis situation’? People don’t like thinking about emergencies: it’s not fun. It’s not ‘Words With Friends’ or ‘TikTok’. With COVID-19, that challenge has now vanished.”
Jeffrey said that emergency applications are not used daily and Therefore the cryptocurrency part helps maintain it in users’ heads: “The $GUARD crypto was a non-crisis-related-way to interact with our users.”
But while the health crisis has enhanced downloads, the fiscal impacts of this crisis are threatening its viability.
“As our runway has always been based in crypto, our piles of Bitcoin and NEO have depleted in value with the COVID-19 crashes. I’ve been supplementing corporate expenses with my own personal money to cover costs. Bottom line? We have about six months left as we are right now, barring any new curve balls thrown at us.”
More ventures underway
Looking forward, Jeffrey said that the project had found a partner, with whom they will sign a deal to conduct a joint thing, which will allow them to attract new venture capital interest.
In their clients’ geographical distribution, Jeffrey said that one third are in the usa, the rest are scattered throughout the world. Moreover, the program has high concentrations in India, Myanmar, Pakistan, Brazil, Egypt, and Iraq.
Jeffrey considers that overall the present crisis will be favorable for cryptocurrency:
“The COVID-19 crisis is causing tremendous strain on the legacy banking system worldwide — far worse than the 2008 crisis. This strain has not yet been felt by the average person, but it will be in the coming months. At that point, we may see a sharp increase in usage of Bitcoin as a store of value. We may also see other cryptos come into use for cash-like faster, smaller payments.”