Yoti has achieved another high-profile demonstration of the FRANKD COVID-19 test. The FRANKD test can generate results in only 30 minutes, and was developed by the Polish company GeneMe to facilitate large-scale testing efforts.
The two-week demonstration was carried out at London’s Heathrow Airport, which trialed several different technologies to get a better sense of the logistical challenges involved in any mass testing initiative. FRANKD is currently being used to test the cast and crew of Sleepless, A Musical Romance at the Troubadour Wembley Park Theatre, although Heathrow will obviously have much greater testing requirements if it ever returns to its pre-COVID numbers. The British hub processed a record 80.9 million passengers in 2019.
“If we can find a test that is accurate, gets a result within minutes, is cost-effective and gets the Government green light, we could have the potential to introduce wide-scale testing at the airport,” explained Heathrow CEO John Holland-Kaye. “Without this, our first class aviation sector risks becoming second class, giving Britain’s competitive advantage to others.”
For its part, Yoti has partnered with GeneMe to make the testing process more efficient. People are asked to download the free app before the FRANKD test, and to set up a secure account with a PIN and a selfie for security. They then use their phone to scan the QR code on their test, which links their results to their account. After that, they can leave the testing area and their results are sent directly to their phone once the test is complete.
The FRANKD test does not check for antibodies, and instead uses a sample taken from the inside of the mouth with a cotton swab to determine whether or not the individual is currently infected with COVID-19. That part of the process takes roughly one minute.
The Heathrow trial involved airport employees rather than passengers, while previous FRANKD trials were performed at care facilities and football clubs. According to Yoti, FRANKD results can be used as an immunity credential to support travel and the safe return to public spaces.