Are Virtual Sidewalks Coming to Your City Soon?
Categories: Tech

Are Virtual Sidewalks Coming to Your City Soon?

Commuting. Let’s start out with the positives: Commuting can be… nice! You can read a book or catch up on emails. You could fall in love with a stranger. You can be productive and use all those apps you download. It can also suck. You can get stuck on the train, miss your bus by a second and hop on the wrong subway only to find out *after* the doors shut. There’s gotta be a better way to get from A to B in your city — and we think we found it.

You might already see TransitScreen in an office or university in one of the cities its sprinkled in, its helpful digital signage spelling out your transit options. Now the same company wants to expand to offer the services you might use a range of apps for in a way everyone can access when they’re strolling on the sidewalk. They want to project their signs on streets.

The projections could go anywhere and include more information than just when a train is coming and going. It would combine the power of all of your transit and map-related apps. The sidewalk TransitScreens could share where and when each nearby train or bus is leaving, and could also point you in the direction of the closest bike share or even tally up how many taxis are around. Like in the above image, it could show tourists what landmarks are around, tip off locals to potential transit issues with real-time Tweets and help everyone plan for pending rain with an hourly forecast.

To cover all of your public transportation bases, you’ll likely have to download a few different apps. You need your map app — at least one. You need the official MTA-type app and then a spin-off for the bus and subway, plus more for biking and walking. Let’s not even add up anything that lets you hail a cab or share a set of wheels. One of the beauties of this idea is that TransitScreen could serve them all up for those who might not have a smartphone but still want to explore the city they’re in. And now you can access all that info in a way that won’t zap any of your battery. Now you can save it for gaming when you do make that bus.

What do you use to make your commute better? When traveling to a new city, how do you get around?