Swiss Innovation Lab announces solution to improve accessibility for PRM

28 June 2017  •  Author(s): EuroTransport

Swiss Innovation Lab, a system and software house offering innovative beacon solutions, has released MyAid – a solution that aims to simplify the use of public transport for people with disabilities and the elderly.

MyAid solution

Recent statistics show that people with disabilities represent around 15 per cent of the EU population (source: Eurostat) demonstrating a real need for a solution to simplify use and improve the quality of time spent on public transport for such passengers.

Easing anxiety for passengers

Persons with disabilities, reduced mobility and the elderly represent a diverse group, but each experience certain inconvenient situations when using public transport. These difficulties – including ticket purchasing and validating, getting on the right bus, and seeing/hearing the next stop information etc. – influence their daily tasks and negatively impact their sense of independence.

Solution for growing societal group

Swiss Innovation Lab have developed MyAid from a deep understanding of the transportation barriers that affect the lives of people with disabilities, reduced mobility and the elderly.

The main aim of the solution is to raise the driver’s awareness of passengers that require specific assistance. The hardware component of MyAid comes with integrated gBeacon – a GPS based beacon – and four LED lights to enable communication between the driver and the passenger’s mobile app. The technology is usually installed next to the driver and utilises Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) signals to detect a passenger’s smartphone when in proximity.

The software component includes the app or SDK for passengers.

The MyAid app, available both for Android and iPhone, works as an aid that allows passengers to be informed and request support via their smartphone. Once the passenger has requested support, the LED lamp on the MyAid panel lights up and informs the driver that assistance/action is needed.

Customisation is available for the solution to enable different messages to be indicated to the driver, including when a person requiring assistance is nearby; indicating that a person requires assistance to board or alight; if priority seating is needed; or in case of some emergency.

Such communication via the app can be customised based on the passenger’s needs by using voice commands, vibration notifications or audio notifications.

The solution also enables fully automatic fare collection by means of an integrated GPS receiver and virtual stop handling, which enables the logging of travelled routes to be achieved in the background.
Given that the tool provides valuable support and is easy to use – both for drivers and users – the benefits should be significant.

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