DreamLab uses the processing power of smartphones to help analyse complex data while their owners sleep, to speed up cancer and coronavirus research.
DreamLab is a specialist app, developed by Vodafone Foundation Australia as an easy way for anyone to support cancer research while their phone is on charge overnight.
While traditional experimental research and standard research methods could take years to develop, the mobile cloud-based processing approach of DreamLab can drastically reduce the time taken to analyse the huge amount of data that exists. A desktop computer running 24-hours a day would take decades to process the data, but a network of 100,000 smartphones running overnight could do the job in just a couple of months.
In April 2020, following the COVID-19 outbreak, a new Corona-AI project launched on the app, which uses the same technology to help in the fight against the coronavirus outbreak.
The free DreamLab app enables smartphone users to harness the collective processing power of their mobile phones to help speed up research into treatments for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), as part of a partnership between Vodafone Foundation and scientists at Imperial College London.
The project combines artificial intelligence and the processing power of idle smartphones to speed up the discovery of novel anti-viral components in existing medicines and help the hunt for anti-viral molecules in foods. The app works by creating a network of smartphones to power a virtual supercomputer, capable of processing billions of calculations, without collecting or disclosing users’ location data. No personal data is downloaded to or processed from the user’s device.
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DreamLab is available to download now in Australia, UK, Italy, New Zealand, Spain, Romania, Portugal, Ghana, South Africa, Lesotho and Germany, and will launch in Ireland, Greece, Turkey and Albania later in 2020.
DreamLab is free to download and free to use for Vodafone customers, meaning it does not eat into monthly data allowances. The app can also be used across other networks, with users choosing how much data they wish to donate, or connecting via Wi-Fi.
To download the app, search for DreamLab in the App Store for iOS or Play Store for Android.