Pitt Scholar and Restaurant Proprietor’s Son Creates ‘Bar Spy’ App to Assist Struggling Companies Throughout Pandemic – CBS Pittsburgh
PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to devastate the restaurant industry, a student in Pitt is trying to help them. He created an app called Bar Spy to trick people into patronizing a company.
Computer science major Gabriel Thrower tries to give restaurants a chance to fight during yet another round of COVID-19 restrictions.
“If you opened a restaurant in the last five years, you would probably get this whole coronavirus thing down,” Thrower said.
He has seen his father’s restaurant take a hard hit for the past 9 months.
“It’s just crazy how much business is down now,” said the senior Pitt.
He had thought about it when he lived in town.
“I thought it would be great if there was a platform where all these people could advertise and let people know what they’re doing,” he said.
Then when the pandemic started, the Pitt senior knew it was time.
After six months of work, the app was released this week.
The free app uses user-generated content based on your location to show facilities around you, if they are open, what specifics they have, and lets you search. It also provides a link to their website and reviews.
“If someone is on the sidewalk, they’ll be on the phone anyway. In the digital world we live in, I think this is a more effective way to attract people, ”Thrower told KDKA.
So far, Thrower has seen dozens of users of the app since it became available.
“I check the app several times a day because it’s my baby,” Thrower said with a laugh.
He hopes this can be a beyond the pandemic resource for restaurants and bars.