The Apple Watch will tell you if your train is running late

5 Comments

Apple and its developers are announcing a lot of apps being retooled for its new smart watch, launching next week, but one particular app caught my eye. Crowdsoured public transit app Moovit says it will have an Apple Watch-optimized version of its app ready when the wearable goes on sale whenever that date happens to be.

There are several smartphone apps that will help you navigate the complex train, bus and metro networks of any big city, but the only problem with them is they’re in your smartphone. When you’re rushing to catch a train, or on a crowded sidewalk trying to find the closest bus stop, the last thing you want to do is whip out your device. Putting basic, yet pertinent information you need to navigate a crowded cityscape on your wrist is an ideal use case for a wearable. Moovit says an Android Wear version of the app will also be released in [company]Google[/company] Play sometime in the second quarter.

Moovit Apple Watch 1

 

The [company]Apple[/company] Watch app will give you a tiny map showing the nearest public transit stops so if you’re in an unfamiliar area, you’ll know where to head to catch your bus or train. Tap on one of those icons, and you’ll get arrival times for every train or bus that stops there. While actually planning a trip might be easier on your phone than on the Watch’s limited display, once you have an itinerary entered, Moovit will show you the trip details. For example, Moovit will show you directions to a transit stop and your expected time arrival at your destination.

Also, if you have favorite itineraries programmed into Moovit – for instance, your daily commute to work – the Watch will display the next arrival and departure times of the buses and trains you typically take. Finally, the app will ship alerts to your watch face on service disruptions for those same oft-used transit lines.

Moovit Apple Watch 2

 

This would have been an awfully handy thing to have this week at Mobile World Congress where accessing the Barcelona metro system is a must unless you like 2-hour cab lines. A simple glance at my wrist would have told me where I needed to go to catch my train, and how long I had before it arrived. Instead, I stood around at crowded intersections looking like a rube as I tried to access Google Maps on my phone. ETA information also would have been quite helpful since I often found myself arriving either 30 minutes early or 30 minutes late to appointments.

Moovit, which is often described as the Waze of public transit, has been on a bit of a tear lately. The Israeli company recently raised a $50 million Series C round, and it has expanded into 500 cities in 50 countries while racking up 15 million users contributing transit data to its database.

 

5 Comments

Rann Xeroxx

Why all the PR for Apple Watch? Why pay an extra $400 for something that you have to already have tethered to your phone to do? And in fact its really your phone telling you that your train is late, the watch is just a remote app screen of sorts.

And why not have the same headline for the latest Android Wear watch, that already had done this function for a while?

Bernhard Prawer

Does the Apple Watch tell me also everywhere in the world, that the train is running late, or only in the US? I would like to know if my train in Germany is running late as well. Would be great.

QwertyJuan

Considering Google Now already does this sort of thing, am I supposed to be impressed?

Fennec

I was just about to say this. And of course, it’s Apple tech! Made for people who are either ignorant or apathetic to developments in technology so that it appears that their shiny Apple box is the first to do x; y; and z, rather than the last.

Guest1831

Thanks.

Not to mention there are apps that run on smartphones – which most of us already have – that do it.

So GigaOm, like other sites, trying to hype the Apple Watch. A product looking for a market.

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