iPlaySafe, the first sexual health testing app that incorporates status-sharing into its user interface, will launch earlier than planned due to user interest.

Co-founder Georgia di Mattos confirmed to SEXTECHGUIDE that launch plans have been brought forward for the medical app, and that it hopes to tackle the taboo around STI testing and safe sex.

“We are not just building an app, we are building a medical device. We want people to feel confident and rely on the product,” di Mattos told us. “[As such], we will provide accurate results, informed pathways and next steps for every outcome.” 

The app will allow for safe play by delivering a medically-assured, comprehensive STI test kit, with each one coming with a uniquely activated identification code. Designed for the sharing generation, users can test and share sexual health profiles, alongside feeding their curiosity for sexuality and play with information packs and additional content.

The platform encourages users to get tested at least once every six months, by displaying a color-coded verification badge on display profiles (specific details aren’t displayed publicly but are available privately to users via a certified medical app). 

Once the app has been downloaded, users can order a one-off kit or subscription to a home testing kit made in an accredited lab. After being ordered via the app, the kit is securely delivered to your door. Users will then receive results via their digital, personal profile in the app. From then you have the option to share your ‘verified healthy’ status as and when required. 

Green badge holders are subscribers who are automatically sent a test every six months. According to the founders at iPlaySafe, holding this badge indicates that you’re someone who is takes their sexual health seriously, committing to getting tested regularly through the subscription. Blue badge holders are ‘pay as you go’ users, as in, they have tested negative within the past six months with the one-off kit ordered through the app. Red badge holders have not been tested within the past six or more months.  

Di Mattos had the idea for iPlaySafe in September 2019, when a friend told her that asking a new sexual partner if he’d recently been tested for STIs was a “mood killer”. 

The former architect then got in touch with co-founder Bianca Dunne, who has a medical background as an NHS sonographer, to discuss creating a sexual health app that had the potential to change how we approach talking about testing. 

“There are products that get people to do home-testing, but they stop there. No product so far is a sharing platform. I think what differentiates us is really that we’re not just a sexual health testing provider, but a status sharing platform. Because so far people could get testing, but it’s stopped there. We’re the first ones to offer this.” 

Di Mattos added that she hoped the app could partner with the NHS in the future, in the same way the British health provider has recently partnered up with healthtech services such as Fettle to provide contraception services. 

The app has a launch target of November 2020, the company told us.

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