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30 Free Software & Services to Help During the Coronavirus Pandemic

Free Tools to Help During Coronavirus Pandemic
Written by Martins Okoi
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With over 1.2 million active cases, the COVID-19 pandemic has significantly affected the globe with a lot fewer people traveling, people losing their employment and others having to work remotely. Public gatherings are prohibited and public events are banned. The list goes on.

But no matter how dark a cloud is, there is a silver lining and it’s not all bad news. Looking on the bright side of things, this can be an excellent time to know oneself better, engage more closely with loved ones, and even learn new skills.

Today’s article is a list of top-notch tools that are offering freebies to help ease the pandemic strife. They can help you to organize your family and teams whether you’re a teacher or a business and I have grouped them into major categories starting with general tools.

General

  1. Brit.co: Free DIY classes for the next two weeks with the discount code “selfcare” at checkout.
  2. Audible: Amazon has made a free collection of stories for kids of all ages available for streaming on desktop, laptop, and phone or tablet.
  3. Calm: Stay mentally and emotionally healthy using the free resources courtesy of Calm.
  4. Shopify: Free 90-day trial for all new customers as well as the option to extend a 14-day trial to 90 days.
  5. TripIt: Enjoy the Tripit Pro flight tracking service for 6 months free of charge.
  6. U-Haul: Students impacted by schedule changes at their universities can enjoy 30 days self-storage for free.

Collaboration and Productivity

  1. Atlassian: Free access to Cloud products for tracking issues and projects using Confluence and Jira. This is coupled with free access to Trello Business Class to K-12 and higher education for one year.
  2. DocuSign: Manage electronic agreements for free.
  3. Dropbox: Nonprofits and NGOs focused on fighting COVID-19 can enjoy free access to Dropbox Business and HelloSign Enterprise subscriptions for 3 months. The same goes for Box.
  4. Evernote: Access the Evernote Basic plan for free.
  5. Monday.com: Free and complete to students and non-profit organizations working against the COVID-19 pandemic coupled with unlimited setup support.
  6. Microsoft: Free Office 365 E1 Trial with Microsoft Teams for 6 months.
  7. Smartsheet: Free templates for organizations to build research-related dashboards, forms, and sheets, with CDC documentation and other resources.
  8. PandaDoc: Enjoy a free eSign plan with access to unlimited document uploads, unlimited users, payment processing, and unlimited signatures.
  9. Zoho: Free suite of all Zoho’s suite of 11 apps for editing documents, handling spreadsheets, etc. until July 1.

Communication

  1. Zoom: No more 40 min time limit on the basic free account for K-12 schools.
  2. Google: Free, premium version of its workplace video chat tool until July. The features include up to 250 participants per call, record meetings and save to Google Drive, and live streaming for up to 100,000 viewers.
  3. Slack: Free upgrade to for collaborators carrying out coronavirus research.
  4. RingCentral: Free video conferencing for K-12 schools, health-care providers, news and media organizations, public sectors, and non-profits.
  5. Comcast: Free Xfinity WiFi hotspots for both subscribers and not subscribers. Just look in a list of hotspots and select the “xfinitywifi” network.
  6. Otter.ai: Free 2-month access to Otter for teams, Otter.ai’s enterprise package which automatically transcribes meetings, classes, etc.
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Education

  1. Amazon: Free online access to sponsored computer science courses in the United States for graders 6-12 learners, their teachers, and their parents.
  2. Codeacademy: High school and college students can access up to 10,000 scholarships to Codecademy Pro for the rest of the school year.
  3. Linkedin: Access up to 16 free learning courses with tips on how to build relationships, boost productivity, stay socially active even when practising social distancing, etc.
  4. McGraw-Hill: Free resources to help K-12 teachers make the transition to remote teaching.
  5. Crowdmark: Access Crowdmark’s online analytics and grading platform until May 31.

Finance and Accounting

  1. Bill.com: New customers of small and mid-size businesses can enjoy a free 90-day subscription and manage their cashflows by automating sending/receiving payments, processing of bills, and generating invoices.
  2. Expensify: Get reimbursed with up to $50 for groceries and essential services purchased on your SNAP card.
  3. Kabbage: A free account with Kabbage Payments enables you to share your custom gift certificate URL on your website and social media platforms.
  4. Wave: Small businesses can enjoy free financial software services for accounting, invoicing and bookkeeping.

Marketing

  1. Adobe: Students and educators can request for free home access to Creative Cloud apps until May 31, 2020. This is coupled with free 90-day access to Adobe Connect for web conferencing until July 1, 2020.
  2. Hootsuite: Stay connected to your customers and manage your social media accounts by taking advantage of the free access to Hootsuite Professional until July 1st.
  3. Salesforce: Free access to care management teams for health systems, emergency response teams, and call centres.
  4. Mailchimp: Free Standard accounts for eligible groups to send public health information about COVID-19 until June 30, 2020.
  5. SurveyMonkey: Access several free questionnaire templates created by research experts for collecting employee and customer feedback.
  6. Ubersuggest: Access the free plan for Neil Patel’s Ubersuggest and generate keywords to boost your content marketing strategy.
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People and Recruiting

  1. OutMatch: Free access to OutMatch for holding interviews for 60 days. Use live videos and pre-recorded interviews to screen and hire candidates virtually.
  2. HR Acuity: The SaaS version is now free for businesses to manage COVID-19-related issues. The limited-edition enables employees to make documentations and track the impact of the pandemic and is free until July 1st.
  3. Workable: Free access for all customers and free access to a library of COVID-19 response content for business leaders and HR professionals.
  4. Lever: Integrate with zoom to enjoy free video interviewing for 1:1s and panels. You can schedule and join Zoom meetings directly from within the Lever app.
  5. Harver: Free pre-employment assessment platform for hiring at scale for those affected by COVID-19. Offer valid for at least 60 days. No strings attached.
  6. Lystloc: This is a real-time location intelligence and analytics SaaS product currently offering free Lystloc Office (Remote) User & API licenses to organizations fighting COVID-19 till June 1st, 2020.

Research and Development

  1. Autodesk: Enjoy free access to a select list of Autodesk products and services for commercial use. The list includes AutoCAD Web, BIM 360 Docs, BIM 360 Design, Fusion 360, Fusion Team, and Shotgun.
  2. Nvidia: Researchers can access Parabricks for 90 days free of charge.
  3. Carto: Organizations fighting COVID-19 can enjoy this free visualization software.
  4. Qualtrics: Enjoy free access to use Qualtrics Remote Work Pulse.

Software Support and Security

  1. 1Password: Enjoy a free business account for 6 months and manage your logins and other related content from anywhere.
  2. Bitdefender: Healthcare customers can enjoy end-to-end enterprise-grade protection services until the end of June 2020.
  3. Cloudflare: Small teams and businesses can enjoy Cloudfare’s services for the next 6 months.
  4. Commvault: Enjoy free access to Metallic Endpoint Backup and Recovery with unlimited Microsoft Azure backup storage for up to 1,000 endpoint devices, in the U.S. and Canada until September 1.
  5. OneClick: Remote workers can enjoy free access to the Basic Starter Package for the next three months.
  6. TechSmith: Enjoy a free license to Snagit and the TechSmith Video Review software until June 30th, 2020.

I’m certain that you would have found at least one service that is useful to you and I hope the software that you choose will go a long way to help you get through these trying times.

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In the meantime, feel free to add lists of other supportive COVID-19-related products and services that you know about.

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About the author

Martins Okoi

Martins Divine Okoi is a Computer Science graduate with a passion for Linux and Open Source software. He is studying again for an MSc in Cybersecurity but still makes time to write about the best software the market has to offer.