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Danish app Endomondo purchased by US giant

In a bid to create “the world's largest digital health and fitness community”, Under Armour purchased Endomondo and MyFitnessPal for a combined $560 million.

Danish app Endomondo purchased by US giant
Mette Lykke, the CEO and co-founder of Endomondo. Photo: Nikolai Linares/Scanpix
The Copenhagen-based social fitness app Endomondo was purchased by American athletic apparel giant Under Armour for $85 million (554 million kroner), the companies announced on Wednesday. 
 
Under Armour also shelled out $475 million to purchase the health tracker MyFitnessPal. 
 
Endomondo has attracted more than 20 million users since its launch in 2007. More than 80 percent of its users are located outside of the United States, which Under Armour said in a press release would give them “immediate scale and increased international presence”.
 
The app tracks exercise activity like jogging, cycling and a host of other sports and can monitor a user’s pace and heart rate during workouts. The app has a social element that allows users to share the exercises with their friends and complete in challenges to see who can track the most kilometres or burn the most calories. 
 
In announcing the purchase of Endomondo and MyFitnessPal, Under Armous said it was creating “the world's largest digital health and fitness community”.
 
"Endomondo has built an engaged global community of fitness enthusiasts, providing a strong technical platform for our users, while adhering to our core belief that social interaction and support are key motivators when it comes to getting fit and maintaining a healthy lifestyle," Mette Lykke, Endomondo’s co-Founder and CEO, said in a statement. "We share in Under Armour's passion for innovation, as well as its mission to make athletes better, and we look forward to better serving the needs of athletes around the world."
 
Endomondo’s sale had been rumoured since January. Under the purchase agreement, it will operate as a wholly-owned subsidiary and remain in its Copenhagen headquarters. 

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What you need to know about technical error with Denmark’s Smittestop Covid-19 app

A technical issue has been detected with the Smittestop app used to help trace Covid-19 in Denmark.

What you need to know about technical error with Denmark’s Smittestop Covid-19 app
Photo: Mads Claus Rasmussen/Ritzau Scanpix

The technical problem may have caused certain users not to be notified they have been close to a person infected with coronavirus, when in fact this was the case.

It is currently unknown whether the issue has been present since the app was launched in June, according to DR.

Newspaper Politiken has reported that Copenhagen city councillor Pia Allerslev found that her family did not receive warnings from the app even though she tested positive for Covid-19 and had been close to them for over 15 minutes, the requirement for the notification.

Similar situations have subsequently been reported in other media in Denmark.

“We have recently tested the app to recreate the situation and appear to have found a possible cause for (the error),” Lene Ærbo, the technical leader of the app for the Danish health ministry, told DR.

Technical staff are working to confirm the error before releasing an update, according to the broadcaster’s report.

“We can see that in some cases, where mobile phones are together for a longer period, for example people who live together, close contacts don’t get a (possible) infection notification,” Ærbo said.

She added that because Google and Apple, who developed the Danish app, update it on an ongoing basis, it was not currently possible to say whether the error has always existed.

The Smittestop app is regarded as a supplement to manual contact tracing in Denmark, which is conducted by the Danish Patient Safety Authority (Styrelsen for Patientsikkerhed).

One of its key intended functions is to identify infection chains between people who do not know each other.

Ærbo said to DR that the technical problem is limited to very close contacts – such as people in the same household – and not those for which contact had a relatively short duration.

“We can see that infection notifications are sent out for short-lived contacts. That is typically unknown contacts, so this is positive,” she said.

“But there have been challenges with household contacts and we are testing and working to improve this as soon as possible,” she added.

According to Ministry of Health figures reported by DR, 2,266 people registered their positive coronavirus test on the app between its launch and September 21st. The app has been downloaded 1,393,967 times.

App users who experience problems are advised to contact Sundhed.dk support on telephone number 44222080.

READ ALSO: Which European countries' coronavirus phone apps have had the most success?

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