Bus users in Nottingham can call up real-time travel information on their mobiles after the successful rollout of GPS bus tracking technology originally developed by Nottingham Trent University.
The SMS service, commercially launched by Nottingham City Council and mobile application developer Echo Billing, allows users waiting at bus stops to check route numbers, service announcements and the arrival time of the next bus.
Wireless message operator Netsize will deliver cross-network SMS connectivity and a full billing system based on premium rate SMS.
The service will cost the user 25p per message and plans are underway to roll out the service nationwide.
Customers simply text a unique four-digit code posted at the bus stop, along with their required destination, to mobile shortcode 83101.
SMS-based information is then sent back to the user, describing the most appropriate route.
Alternatively, passengers not at a bus stop can text their desired start and finish points and the NextBus service will advise them on which buses to catch and where to change.
Participating buses are also fitted with GPS, which means that their locations and times of arrival can be recorded and transmitted to mobiles.
Nicola Tidy, marketing and communications director at Nottingham City Transport, said: "We are very pleased with the response we received from the initial trial of NextBus, and we expect more users to use the service now it is extended to all NCT routes."
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