A recent study has shown that real-time arrival data for buses does indeed boost transit usage. And several cities have discovered that they don’t have to do all the work of getting the information into riders’ hands.
In April, SSTI reported that a firm called ArrivalStar was asserting patent rights to a bus-arrival announcement system it claims to have invented, demanding that transit agencies and delivery companies pay for the right to use bus- and train-arrival apps and other tracking systems. Relief may be on the way. This month the San Francisco-based Electronic Freedom Foundation (EFF) challenged ArrivalStar’s patent in a request to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.