Digital Buses on Dhaka streets
On April 10, 2014, the Communications Minister Obaidul Quader inaugurated 10 Digital Buses on BRTC’s Motijheel-Uttara route at the Farmgate Bus Stand. State Minister for Post, ICT and Telecommunications ministry, Junaid Ahmed Palak, was also present at the launching of the initiative that was implemented with the technical support of Access to Information (a2i) Programme of the Prime Minister’s Office, funded by UNDP and USAID.
The buses, which would be running on a test basis initially, have integrated live tracking feature allowing commuters to easily track these vehicles, e.g. their routes, which way they are heading, and where it is, by going to urbanlaunchpad.org/brtc using their internet-enabled smart devices. The feature, at the same time, will allow the BRTC authorities to keep track of their buses on different routes and provide required directives.
Passengers of these Digital Buses would also be able to enjoy free internet access through a WiFi network onboard the bus. The commuters will have to scan a QR Code given inside the bus with their smart device to receive the settings required to access the network. If the test run is successful, the same initiative will be taken all over Dhaka and around the country.
Meanwhile, the lack of proper maps or directions regarding Dhaka’s transit system makes travel planning hard. The a2i programme also has plans to develop a mobile map application for the transit system and also publish printed copies of the map to ease hassles of commuters.
BRTC Chairman Jashim Uddin Ahmed, Access to Information Programme’s Project Director Kabir Bin Anwar and People’s Perspective Specialist Naimuzzaman Mukta were also present along with others at the launching.