Smartphones Continue to Join the Fight against Cancer

March 2014 by: Alpha Tech

In our first February 2014 Issue of ‘Tech Bytes’ we covered how cancer researchers in the UK were using mobile games to help in DNA sequencing of cancer cells. Cancer Research UK released their own iteration of space invaders with the goal of reducing the time it took to study these cells and thereby bring them closer to finding a cure.

Now it seems that two big smartphone manufacturers are enlisting their devices in the fight against cancer. Samsung, working with a group of researchers at the University of Austria, have just released a free Android app Power Sleep. Power Sleep essentially crowdsources the processing power of idle smartphones to sift through protein data that is vital to medical advances in genetics, biochemistry, molecular biology, and cancer research. The app doubles as an alarm clock and once set begins grabbing packets of data from a central database to crunch and then sends them back when the process is complete.

Taiwanese smartphone maker HTC also recently launched its Power to Give™ initiative. Similar to Samsung’s app, HTC’s Android-only app uses an idle phone’s processing power to crunch through data for medical research purposes. However, what sets HTC’s app apart is that it allows the user choose which research initiative to back. 

Our Take With Samsung and HTC’s involvement, there are potentially millions of mini-supercomputers worldwide that will come to the aide of various medical research initiatives. Projects that could otherwise take hundreds of years due to the mass of data that needs to be processed could be executed in a drastically shorter time thanks to projects like Power Sleep and Power to Give™.

So if you own an Android phone, why not join the fight! - Both apps are available on the Google Play store for free.