Australia, Bus Industry News, Bus Trials, Technology, Technology

Adelaide Metro trials groundbreaking new accessibility app

The See Me app is making headlines for its potential to make bus and coach travel easier and more accessible for all people

The South Australian government has announced that Adelaide Metro is trialling a new app to increase accessibility on public transport services.

The new app, called See Me, helps public transport passengers by enabling them to alert a bus driver that they’re waiting at a bus stop.

Developed by Cassie Hames, who is legally blind, the See Me app is Adelaide-based at SAGE Automation.

The app was initially designed to support people who are blind or vision-impaired, but it can also be used by people of all abilities due to its potential to ease anxiety for all public transport customers.

From today, the See Me app will be trialled for six months on the 99A and 99C free City Connector services, available in the Adelaide CBD during the week.

Instead of having to physically hail the bus, the app links to the bus onboard system to notify the bus driver digitally that a passenger is waiting.

The app then delivers spoken, visual and haptic notifications to the passenger’s phone when the bus is approaching both the pick-up and destination locations.

Hames has been recognised as one of three winners of the 2022 Holman Prize for the app, which is an international award for innovative thinkers who are blind or legally blind.

The app itself was also recently recognised as Initiative of the Year at the 2023 Australian Access Awards due to its ability to ensure people don’t miss their stop, making independent travel safer and more accessible for everyone.

Earlier this year, SAGE Automation also secured a $500,000 investment from iMOVE Cooperative Research Centre’s Impact Extension Program to support the app development from proof-of-concept to a scalable solution.

The app has even caught the attention of the Bus Industry Confederation (BIC), who says in a LinkedIn release that it is “watching with great excitement” the pilot in Adelaide.

“The trial has kicked off in Adelaide ahead of what the technology’s developer hopes is an expanded rollout,” BIC says.

The app, which is available now for download on Apple and Android devices by searching for See Me: Bus Signalling, has the added benefit of assisting tourists who often frequent both routes, ensuring they don’t miss their destinations when travelling around Adelaide.

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