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China tech

Uber for grave visits? Tech fills unique niches in shut-in China

Mapping coronavirus patients raises privacy questions

Staffers in protective gear clean gravestones on behalf of families in Beijing, part of the government's efforts to reduce crowds during the Qingming Festival.   © Reuters

TOKYO -- Strict restrictions China has placed on people's movement to contain the coronavirus have spawned a throng of online services that were once unimaginable, from virtual grave visits to neighborhood maps of COVID-19 patients.

As China celebrated its annual Qingming Festival in early April, people could not make it to the graves of relatives and friends as they do every year. So they turned to virtual visits touted by newly sprung-up websites.

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