QUENTINSBURGH- On Friday QUARTA, Quentinsburgh’s public transit authority, released a new app for passengers called the QTransit App. It is already being hailed as one of the most advanced transit authority apps in the world.
The app boasts a huge number of features, including maps and schedules for every route and the entire system, a transit GPS and trip planner powered by StepMaps (Stepstone Technology), transit news updates, and live updating information about nearby destinations. (Payment for fares and digital passes were considered as additional features, but were decided against.)
The most basic feature is simply that riders can now have route maps and schedules at their fingertips. Unlike many other apps, the digital maps are interactive, and real-time arrival can be pulled up for any route or QUARTA service, including bus, metro, commuter rail, trolley, and more (basically just excluding QCycle Bikeshare, as bikes are not wired with real time GPS).
The app also provides easy free digital access to the QRider newsletter and transit news updates from the newly created QUARTANews (which will also go live at the new site quartanews.fr). Users will be able to even set the app to get live notifications about service changes and transit news, accirding to their personal preference.
However, the two most prominent features being praised are the live transit GPS and the StripMapLive nearby destination feature.
The QTransitGPS, powered by StepMaps, is basically a StepMaps or Glofish Maps dedicated to public transit. Riders can either put in a starting destination or use location services on their device and get a multitude of convenient public transportation options. Riders can put in preferences, such as “local bus only”, “bus and metro”, or “fastest possible trip”. Like a regular GPS, it will give multiple possible routes, and can recalculate if the passenger needs to change their route. The app will even show you how to get to the nearest bikeshare location to get to a destination not served by transit, or give you information about intercity rail or bus if you need to go somewhere outside of the QUARTA service area. The app proves especially helpful for finding the nearest bus stop or metro station.
However, perhaps even more impressive is the StripMapLive feature. Also powered by StepMaps, the feature uses location services to figure out where the passenger is, and then shows details about where they are; what features that station, bus stop, or area has; and show nearby destinations. StripMapLive shows details that would never be able to fit on a normal paper map, or even a regular digital map, such as restrooms in metro stations, whether stations have elevators in addition to the the regular ramps, and where a passenger could get off and get a bite to eat along their route. It also conveniently shows transfers, and can send notifications to the passenger when they’ve arrived at their stop.
“StripMapLive takes the concept of the strip map to a whole new level,” head developer Gracie Fletcher told PWN. “It goes beyond just telling you a list of stops. For the first time you can get a strip map for any route in the system, even a local bus, and even find out what’s along the route.”
The original app, the QRider app, only had PDF versions of the system and route maps, trip planning and real time tracking. These new features make the QTransit App much more revolutionary.
QUARTA also plans to launch some of these features, especially the QTransitGPS, online as well, as part of a website revamp currently in progress.
StepMaps and the designers of the QTransit app hope to create similar apps for other Freedemian cities with rapid transit. Laneston/Vandover and the VAULT system are expected to get a similar app in the next few months, as well as Personsboro/Leonard’s PLATA system, and Graham City is getting a beta version until at least the core if the new BRT system being built in place of demolished subway lines. Graham City’s transit will be getting a total revamp and rebranding upon the completion of the first two BRT lines under construction..
As of right now, the app is available for StepStone devices, Megamer GamePhones, Zenergy devices and Saehan Group devices. QUARTA plans to expand the app to other operating systems in coming months.