London Testing Out Free WiFi on Select Bus Routes
'Transport for London' has launched a trial on two buses to keep passengers connected
Transport for London has launched a trial of free WiFi on two bus routes in the city. Passengers are able to access the internet on two buses that have WiFi technology installed, a route 12 bus operating between Dulwich and Oxford Circus, and a route RV1 bus that operates between Covent Garden and Tower Hill.
If the trial is successful, it is hoped that sponsors will be found so it can roll out to more buses in the fleet. This would enable the technology to be delivered at no extra cost to taxpayers or passengers.
Along with the free WiFi trial, a number of other innovations have been developed to improve bus passengers’ experience during the ‘Year of the Bus‘. This series of events, exhibitions, recreations and activities aims to reconnect Londoners with their bus network and celebrate the role it plays in the city.
New technology is being introduced to analyze information from the onboard CCTV system, displaying seat availability on a screen at the bottom of the stairs. It enables passengers to decide whether to use the upper deck and could help reduce crowding on the lower deck. The technology will be trialled on a route 141 bus, which operates between Palmers Green and London Bridge.
New passenger information screens are also being added to keep passengers better informed about their journey. These are displayed prominently on the bus and provide passengers with real-time progress on a local map, details of the previous bus stop and next stops, along with the anticipated time of arrival and details of nearby transport interchanges.
The screens will be trialled on two double deck buses on route 12 operating between Dulwich and Oxford Circus, and on single deck routes 360 (which operates between Albert hall and Elephant & Castle) and RV1 (which operates between Covent Garden and Tower Hill). Simon Reed, TfL’s Head of Technical Services Group, says:
London buses have always led the way with new technology on its network, benefiting the millions of passengers who make the most of the extensive network every day. Innovation is a key theme of the Year of the Bus and we have worked with our suppliers to find new and innovative ways to further improve the experience of our passengers. These trials will establish whether this technology provides genuine benefits to people on the move.