RTA riders can use new mobile app to plan travel

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RTA riders can use new mobile app to plan travel

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A screenshot of the Moovit mobile app. CONTRIBUTED

An increasingly widespread mobile app is announcing a partnership with Greater Dayton Regional Transit Agency.

Mobile app “Moovit” said RTA will add the Moovit app on its website (www.i-riderta.org/) and will encourages riders to download the free app on their iOS or Android phones.

The agreement will let RTA riders use Moovit to better plan their trips, the company said.

“With Moovit now available in Dayton, riders are able to more easily plan and manage RTA’s more than 3,000 stops on 34 routes through Montgomery and western Greene Counties,” Moovit spokesman Steve Swasey said.

Brandon Policicchio, chief customer and business development officer for RTA, said RTA is working on its own announcement regarding Moovit.

“We’re adding another real-time information feature for our customers in addition to the Transit app,” Policicchio said. Transit is a similar app that can be downloaded on Android or via the Apple store, another travel-planning tool, he said.

“Anything we can do to add another tool to our customers’ belts … is we think a win for them,” he added.

RTA has more than 9 million passenger trips annually and has the “greenest fleet of diesel, hybrid diesel and electric trolley buses,” Moovit said in its announcement.

Moovit has tracked public transit information since it was founded more than four years ago. It calls Dayton its 1,500th city or transit agency service area.

Moovit collects data from public and private sources, mixing it in a way that takes advantage of what it says are more than 70 million users and 180,000 “local volunteers” who provide the data.

In a recent interview, Swasey said the app maker is based in Tel Aviv, Israel and has offices all over the world, with about 106 employees.

The app is poised to grow in a world increasingly reliant on public transportation, he argues, saying that while there are 8 billion people globally, there are only 900 million cars.

“We’ve got to do something to get one-driver cars off the road,” he said.

Swasey calls Moovit “the Wikipedia of transit.” The app is free, has no advertising and requires no subscription.

The company secures revenue by licensing rider data to transit agencies. They can use the info to plan routes or improve service.

In short, the app has what Moovit leaders said they believe is valuable data on transit rides and riders.

“We know where they (riders) start and where they finish … we know what route commuters take,” he said. “We know how long they go.”

And this is anonymous data, Swasey said. It sees only “data points.”

“We don’t who you are or your sex or your socio-economic status,” he said.

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