All Aboard for Real Time Train Apps

Minister for Transport Gladys Berejiklian today said rail customers will soon have access to real time information on the rail network, including the actual location of trains, after the recent success of similar smart phone technology for bus users.

Ms Berejiklian said the best and brightest app developers are being called on to compete against each other in a train app hot house with Transport for NSW, to develop at least three user-friendly Real Time Train Apps.

The technology will use markers on stations to receive live information from the trains, immediately feeding back to customers via apps on their handheld devices.

This follows a similar competition held last year which lead to the successful development of three Real Time Bus Apps. Since December they have been downloaded more than 730,000 times and had real time data accessed more than 4 million times.

“We are keen to improve the customer experience on the rail network and we know that a Real Time Train App will give customers the information they need to make decisions about their journey, all in the palm of their hand,” Ms Berejiklian said.

“Customers who have long relied on train timetables will soon be able to know what is happening on the system whether they are at home, work or standing on the platform.”

RailCorp has developed a data feed that is being made available to app developers, that identifies a train’s location and can provide up-to-the-minute information. This will be added to alerts that already exist, like the current Twitter feed on @131500trains.

The App Hot House will take place over the weekend of 16 and 17 February and developers will be challenged to think of a range of customer friendly ways to use this sought-after data. The Apps are expected to be available around the middle of this year.

Third party App Developers can express interest in attending the App Hot House at http://www.digitalpulse.pwc.com.au/tfnswapphothouse.

The Expression of Interest stage will close at 5pm on Monday 11 February.

All Aboard for Real Time Train Apps (pdf 107KB)

1 February 2013