Google Maps now has real-time arrival info for Metro

Have you noticed Metro’s realtime transit updates on Google Maps? Google soft-launched the new feature last week.

If you’re using Google Maps on your smartphone, here’s how it works. After you open the app and it finds your location, tap on the transit icons on the map to see which lines use that stop or station.

You should then see a screen like the one below. In this case, the times that are colored green indicate that a bus is arriving on schedule. The times in red indicate a bus that has fallen behind schedule. The times in black are the scheduled arrival times but with no real-time prediction yet.

realtime

 

This new feature is a mashup of Metro’s planned schedules and the Nextrip realtime arrival data, which Metro began using in 2009. Embedding the real-time data in Google Maps means that users don’t then have to also visit the Nextbus website to see if their bus or train is on time.

As Matt Wong, Strategic Partner Development Manager at Google said last week, “We prefer to launch real-time data as soon as is feasible and then iterate towards a better product as we receive user feedback on issues that may be present.

What do you think? Is this new feature helpful?

21 replies

  1. I don’t need to know how long driver breaks are. I just need time between buses to be accurate if there is a timetable. if not by timetable time, at least expected intervals such as every 10 minutes. If I miss an express big blue bus, I might have to wait another 30 minutes even though the timetable intervals are shorter.

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    • Government has no obligation to do what you are asking and government has no obligation to help you. If you don’t like how Metro is operating, it’s up to you to vote in a person that will get the job done or find an alternate way to get around. The private sector, notably Uber and Lyft, are able to give you what you asking for without long waits. It’s just the matter of paying for the service which is obviously, more expensive than government run public transit services.

      You can’t have “I want excellent public transit services that will come when I want it and I want all of it for cheap.” You want what you asking for, download an Uber app but it’s going to cost you. But at least you’re paying for better service, not paying more for crappier service like Metro.

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