“Before Covid-19, we didn’t have a need to do analysis on real-time location data. The crisis proved there is high value in using real-time data to aid decision-making, and now that we have it, we’re seeing many more applications where we can use it.”

True Digital Group is a digital transformation enabler in Thailand and Southeast Asia, a multinational technology company born through the vision of True Corporation, Thailand’s largest communications service provider (CSP).

Headquartered in Bangkok, Thailand, True Digital has deep competences in AI, big data, blockchain, cloud, the IoT, and robotics. It has built a unique ecosystem of digital platforms and solutions and offers a portfolio of digital services aimed at consumer, merchant, and enterprise markets.


Challenges/Goals

True Digital wanted to lead the fight against Covid by providing real-time monitoring to help prevent new viral outbreaks.

To achieve this, it needed a real-time visualization and alerting system that would use geographic density of mobile phone locations to automatically determine where large gatherings of people were occurring. Given the urgency of the pandemic, the solution needed to be built in just two weeks.


Technology Requirements

True Digital needed to be able to perform event stream processing on 500,000 anonymous mobile phone location events every second for 30+ million mobile phones in Thailand. The solution had to support a moving time window of undetermined duration to support queries against real-time and recent data for contact tracing. It had to keep two petabytes of reference and historical data available in some situations for further analysis. The system's real-time visualization had to support geospatial analytic queries with millisecond latency.


Why SingleStore/Solution

Prior to the pandemic, True Digital Group developed a prototype of the web app that could do real-time, interactive analysis on large data sets. Given the size of the dataset and the complexity of the queries, it could only achieve satisfactory query response times and interactivity by pre-aggregating results, which took many hours to perform. For Covid-19 the system had to process data in real time.

By working with SingleStore, True Digital was able to build Tracepulse to process raw data at one trillion rows per second and ingest 500,000 events and serve as the unified database for the application.

SingleStore's support of Agile, DevOps, and microservices enabled True Digital to design and build its Tracepulse application in a week. True Digital continues to iterate and extend Tracepulse functionality to create new ways to fight the pandemic and potentially other public health crises.


Outcomes

True Digital's Tracepulse system now provides heatmaps of gatherings in an effort to prevent viral hotspots, and assists the Thai government in preventing the spread of Covid-19, by:

  • Monitoring real-time statistics on the percentage changes by geofenced boundaries and jurisdictional boundaries
  • Alerting on population densities that exist based on set thresholds anywhere in the country
  • Determining which medical deliveries can be made to help Thai authorities predict what is needed and obviate the need for testing
  • Combining current data with historical data to enable test-and-trace at scale and in a timely fashion
  • Helping health authorities proactively plan their resource strategy according to population density

“Before COVID-19, we didn’t have a need to do analysis on real-time location data. The crisis proved there is an application for using real-time data to aid decision-making, and now that we have it, we’re seeing many more applications where we can use it," said Bernd Vindevogel, Chief Analytics Officer, True Digital.*

Provides real-time views of mobile phone density

SingleStore serves highly concurrent queries invoked by an interactive geo-analytic dashboard, and this drillable dashboard provides an in-the-moment view of the density of mobile phones in any given area from country level down to each city block.

Offers granular visibility

Users of Tracepulse can visually explore this geographical information and zoom in for a granular, detailed view of clusters of anonymized mobile phones to spot potential emerging problems. Each click progressively queries SingleStore to calculate the new statistics for each geographical region as users drill down.

Powers wall-sized dashboards in Thailand’s crisis operations control center

Streaming raw, anonymized location data from the core telco network into SingleStore via Google Cloud Storage (GCS), allows dashboard users to zoom in, real-time and see where large gatherings may be forming and helps to determine the optimal placement of resources, like medical supplies, to enable dynamic real location of human and physical resources to make disaster relief efforts more proactive.



Watch this video to learn more about how True Digital partnered with SingleStore for its real-time geospatial analytics application, Tracepulse.

Check out this blog post: True Digital Group Helps to Flatten the Curve with SingleStore

* Bernd Vindevogel is now Director Digital Transformation, C.P. Retail Development

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