Knowing When Your Subway Arrives in Real-Real-Time

By Allison Boccamazzo April 08, 2013

There’s a very notable difference between predicting your train time and knowing your train time. We’re not talking about suburbanites who take Metro North Railroad every once in a while; we’re talking about those who call the bustling cities of a metropolis – and all of its intertwining subways – home sweet home.

There are so many things that can go wrong that leave you late for that doctor’s appointment, dinner date or for work five days a week; freak accidents, the weather, a basic malfunction or the fact that the train typically runs slow (They don’t call MTA’s G line the “ghost line” for nothing).

During these situations, updates from, say, MTA, don’t often adequately get the job done of informing their customer – you – of what’s really going on. This, of course, leaves you standing at the platform with your hands in your pockets (and if you’re underground, with no Wi-Fi reception) to play the silent head game of how long it’s going to take for the subway to finally arrive.

It seems the best predictor of when your train is going to arrive is by hearing it straight from the horse’s mouth – or in other words, from those poor saps who are waiting at a different stop ahead of you for that same delayed train.

In my opinion, real-real-time is the true reality of the situation, not just what the most recent update on the company’s website says. It seems almost impossible to know when your subway or train will arrive by the second. HopStop, however, is looking to put an end to this with a new crowdsourcing feature called “HopStop Live!” for the iPhone.

This service gives commuters updates in complete real time – down to the second – and you know you can rely on them because they’re from users who are contributing and sharing transit information as they await at stations along with you.

It’s essentially a social navigation system that enables users to view live feeds of what fellow commuters are saying in their area about their local transportation system. Users can even report good or bad service and freely talk about the cleanliness of the station, or report complaints about fellow riders.

The ultimate goal of this platform, according to HopStop CEO Joe Meyer, is “to create micro-communities around their particular route,” according to Mashable. So far, the app and update can be used in supporting systems of seven countries, including 700 transit agencies, 20,000 lines and 750,000 stops in areas including Sydney, Montreal, London and Honolulu, Mashable adds.

There are tons of apps used for commuting, but it seems this one may have more potential than most – that is, if it delivers on its promise.

To read Mashable’s full report, click here.




Edited by Braden Becker

TechZone360 Web Editor

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