During the many dozens (if not hundreds) of hours I have spent waiting for buses, the thought occurred to me many times that it would be so sweet if I could just look down at a computer or my smartphone and actually see the location of the next bus.
Folks… that day has come.
In addition to being able to find out how long you need to wait for the next bus, customers can now track the whereabouts of a bus on a live map, thanks to the Nextrip program announced on The Source on Wednesday. The following video explains how:
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In short, you can get to the live map by clicking here and clicking on the “View Route on Live Map” button. Then, you’ll select your route and you can see the whereabouts of all the buses on that particular line.
Admittedly, this isn’t super precise — the window refreshes every 20 to 30 seconds, it appears — and I couldn’t get this to work yet on my smartphone. But as someone who rides a lot of Metro buses, this information makes me rethink my reticence to ride buses when they don’t run as frequently, particularly at night and on weekends.
Enjoy and let us know what you think in the comments.
The nextrip bus arrivals app is spectacular. However I noticed that the Metro Silver Line (910) no longer has a stop at Figueroa/Exposition. Instead the stop is at 37th Street Silver Line Station. On the route scroll list, it would be more clear if the silver line says: 910 Metro Silver Line, just like the orange line (901 Metro Orange Line); Most passengers are not familiar with line 910, but the name silver line sounds more clear. In addition, I would like if the route lines shown can have different colors for their service:
Orange: Metro Local Lines (2-290)
Orange: Metro Limited Lines (302-378)
Red: Metro Rapid Lines (705-794)
Purple: Metro Shuttle Lines (603-687)
Blue: Metro Express Lines (439-577X)
Silver with transit way route: Metro Silver Line
Orange with transit way route: Metro Orange Line
If you go to our website at http://www.nextbus.com you can see a list of all of the transit agencies in SoCal and throughout North America that utilize NextBus. Among others in SoCal, VISTA, Glendale Beeline, Moorpark Transit, Simi Valley, Gold Coast and Camarillo utilize NextBus services. If you visit Boston, Washington, DC, and Toronto, you can also use us. We’re hoping to add others in the near future.
has no sound
i tried it
i know the problem is not on my end
as i can listen to otherr metro net videos
with no problem
As of right now this is a complete waste of time, tried it at 3:19am on the 6th of March for route 83 , knowing when the bus passes Broadway and E. Caesar Chavez , no bus shows on the map and no current prediction shows , it still needs some work…
Well, I’ll start: Other than the ones on the Nextbus site (Glendale, UCLA, and a handful of Venutra County systems), Long Beach and Riverside are using the Trapeze WebWatch system.
@SuperMonkey – thanks for letting us know that NextBus is working on multiple platforms. I’m using NextBus on Android 2.3.3 (gingerbread) and it’s working well.
Hey Colleen – We’ll have to run a future story to research which agencies are already on NextBus or some other real time predictive arrival system. I know LADOT has something similar for its DASH buses downtown. Also, UCLA’s BruinBuses use NextBus too.
Contributing writer, The Source
Awesome. Now if only all the bus systems in the region would get on board like Metro did.
NextBus works fine for us on: iPhone 3GS, Microsoft Mobile 6.5 and the Android 2.2 Galaxy Tab. Only con is on the Windows phone 6.5 the map is of low quality.
Nextrip only works for MTA buses that are working and COMING! What will riders have to look for when buses are NOT COMING (as in a BREAKDOWN, for for MTA buses happens continuously!)? How can a waiting rider find out WHY A BUS MAY NOT BE COMING?
Here’s an idea that I got from a friend of mine who, on his own, is doing the same thing for Muni in SF…
Put QR code stickers on bus stops that, when scanned, immediately take you to the nextrip page for that stop.
Great app; I loved Nextrip when I was getting around San Francisco so it’s about time LA got it too.
Would it be possible to tie this directly into Google Maps on our smartphones too?
Hey there —
Metro is working with Google Maps and Microsoft Bing on this.
Editor, The Source
They do have a public XML feed for LA Metro set up as well as other agencies.(http://webservices.nextbus.com/service/publicXMLFeed?command=agencyList).
Also, they do have an iPhone-compatible site for Nextbus (http://nextbus.com/webkit) which uses GPS location to find the nearest stops and predictions.
On the nextbus.com “old” mobile site they have simplified mobile maps. Look at the picture at the right on Steve’s post – next to the line selector there is a link that says “map”.
This is an amazing service. I’ve only used it for two days but I love it!!
It’s like Chem Lab watching all the little molecules moving about a little Petri Dish.
Metro has had GPS on their busses for a while, so what the hell took so long?
Taking the bus is a million times less frustrating when you know when the bus is REALLY coming.
Oh. My. God.
This is so useful. WOW. Thanks for pointing this out, Sirinya — I’d missed it before when looking at the system.
This is incredibly huge.
This makes my day, if not my week, if not my month.
Also, one more thing;
Is there a public API for the GPS data? 🙂
Sirinya, I hope you’re single because this makes me want to marry you!
I’ve been waiting for this ever since I moved here from SF (where I was used to Nextrip as part of daily life). Thanks for the primer and being the bearer of good news!
Though it doesn’t work on my iPhone — the Stop and Vehicles checkboxes are too small and when I zoom in to click them the map resizes and doesn’t resize out when I zoom back out.
Also, after I select a route to see and close the window the map page refreshes and still shows me route 2.
It would be nice to get a permalink to the map with the set zoom level, position and selected routes — sort of like what you did on the nexttrip widget.
But still, very cool!
I’ve found that if I load more than 30 routes at once my browser gets slow/crashes.
Also, the researchers in UCLA’s Institute of Transportation Studies think this is very cool.