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February 19, 2009

RouteShout pilot brings info to bus stops

Knowledge is power — and knowing when the next bus is coming can help riders decide whether to wait in the cold or pop into a coffee shop for a quick cup of something hot.

A free “RouteShout” service is being tested at 22 Port Authority bus stops that primarily serve college students. Using their mobile phones, passengers can text the stop’s unique ID code to the number posted at the stop and receive arrival times for the next buses scheduled to come by, saving calls to the Port Authority’s customer service center for information.

In Oakland, orange RouteShout signs are at the bus stops at Forbes Avenue and McKee Place, Fifth Avenue at Children’s Hospital, and Fifth Avenue at Oakland Avenue. A complete list of stops is available at

RouteShout was developed by the Carnegie Mellon spinoff mobile technology company deeplocal, which is developing additional features that would provide more information at transit stops. According to a deeplocal release, several thousand passengers have used the service since preliminary testing began in late December and more stops could be added if the test is successful.

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