The initiative will see trains equipped with sensors which are able to communicate a range of useful information to the customer as they travel to the station and while on board.
The sensors will indicate, in real time, the location of available seats, the current temperature in each carriage and, where relevant, the onboard catering status and real time running information.
The enabled carriages will deliver uniquely personalised travel updates, improving accessibility based on individual circumstances, with a temperature update sent to passengers that have boarded on a hot day and have more than two stops to go.
The sensor data will be part of the ‘MyJrny’ platform, a new intelligent mobility system linking transport operators with customers via the apps they use to get around.
The new data-driven service is due to launch early next year.
This pilot project is match funded by the Rail Safety and Standards Board’s (RSSB) Train Operator Challenge 15 (TOC’15) competition and Chiltern’s parent company Arriva has fully supported the project with a view to potentially rolling out the approach to other franchises if successful.
Paul Bowden, acting commercial director for Chiltern Railways said: “This pilot project seeks to test how we can transform and personalise passenger journeys.
“The innovation allows customers to arrive for their train better informed and able to make better use of their time both at the station and on board.
“Improving the service we provide our customers is central to everything we do and this project increases our engagement with passengers and enhances the service we deliver.”
Chris Thompson of Enable iD added: “We are enabling personalised real-time travel forecasts containing information for all modes of transport to be delivered by operators, while preserving their customers’ privacy.
“By using ‘in-transit’ sensors in this way Arriva and Chiltern Railways are leading the public transport sector.”
Enable iD are the Midlands based architects of MyJrny, which is part of Innovation Birmingham’s new ‘Serendip’ Smart City Incubator programme, backed by regional public transport body, Centro, and the central government sponsored Transport Systems Catapult.
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