aNewDomain — Not knowing when a train or bus will arrive is the No. 1 commuter frustration. More than actual wait times, safety, overcrowding and unfamiliar routes. Nothing beats having a grip on arrival times. As the urban reality gets more complex, information around public transportation will have to get better. That’s why I took a look at Moovit for Android and Apple iOS. Check out my review below.
In a survey of more than 13,000 global users, US commuters report waiting approximately 40 minutes per day for public transit. This costs them 150 hours per year, about 31 percent of their total commute time.
Los Angeles topped the list with the worst waiting time in the world. Boston took third place.
Moovit for Android and iOS aims to help eliminate all that waiting. Think of it as the Waze of public transportation. Moovit provides step-by-step directions to commuters who get around by bus, train, light rail and other public transportation methods.
The often-used comparison to Waze is apt. The Moovit interface and background technology are remarkably similar to what you get with its driver-appropriate cousin. Using a device’s GPS chip, Moovit already knows where you are. You just type in your destination to get a list of routes and alternative routes that’ll get you there. Better still, there’s also a real-time estimate of when the transit will arrive, which ideally will cut down all that excess standing around.
Here a video with a demo of the app. Scroll below for more on the Moovit app and how to use it.
Video: Moovit 3.0 for Android
And Moovit is going worldwide.
“What differentiates us is we’re the only app that combines data coming from municipalities, open data, with information gathered comprehensively,’ says Moovit co-founder and chief exec Nir Erez. “It makes our data way more accurate and comprehensive.”
Montreal adopted the app based system “to transform passenger experience.” Adds Colette Éthier, chair of the board of directors of the Réseau de transport de Longueuil:
This innovative agreement aims to transform the passenger experience. Riders are encouraged to download the app and share information with other users, thus generating real-time data on route and network conditions.”
Moovit is flush with cash and seems more than able to accomplish a global expansion. It has so far closed $50 million in Series C funding, led by Nokia Growth Partners. And that’s in addition to the participation of BMW i Ventures.
Of the investment, NGP managing partner Bo Ilsoe said:
Urbanization, age demographics and traffic congestion is driving up the usage of public transportation worldwide. Using real-time data and building a seamless experience for the commuter, Moovit is solving a daily problem for millions of people …”
Are you ready to park your car at the edge of the city and start relying on public transportation? If you’re an urban dweller, combining car and public transport as a means of getting around makes more sense than ever. And anyway, try finding a parking space. Not fun.
First Image: The Age Creative Commons