Austin, Texas’ Capital Metro entered a new era in technology by now offering new real-time information to the public across its entire bus fleet.
The real-time data is enabled by GPS technology, which signals a minute-by-minute countdown at each bus stop for the next three bus departures. The GPS-enabled real-time data will also allow Capital Metro to more accurately track every bus on every route, every day. This comprehensive information will allow for specific system improvements and adjustments to be made on a regular basis in the future.
“We are delighted to introduce new technology offerings including real-time data for all our vehicles, and an open data real-time portal, to benefit our customers, encourage innovation by app developers and allow for better collaboration with other system providers,” said Joe Iannello, chief information officer at Capital Metro. “Our customers will now have added reliability when traveling, with real-time next departures and trip planning using location data for all our vehicles.”
The agency rolled out real-time data on MetroRapid and MetroRail last year, receiving strong positive feedback from customers.
Capital Metro continues its drive to offer technological innovations to help riders eliminate the guesswork in trip planning. According to a 2013 American Public Transportation Association (APTA) report, “Millennials and Mobility,” commuters age 18 to 34 rated the availability of real-time updates as the second highest priority they would like to see added to transit offerings over the next decade.
Capital Metro plans to upgrade the look of the desktop website interface in the next few weeks to make it even more customer-friendly. In late 2015, the agency plans to introduce new website tech features that will utilize the real-time information to include live maps that display every route with corresponding buses along the route.