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Old 05-12-2012, 10:17 AM
 
1,316 posts, read 1,912,949 times
Reputation: 918
Default VIA Transit unveils text service for bus arrival times

>>
VIA Metropolitan Transit wants to send its customers an important message — a text message, that is.

The agency rolled out its text-messaging service Wednesday that enables riders to get real-time bus arrival information on their mobile devices. That includes any cell phones with texting capabilities, not just smartphones.
<<

Rest of the article at: VIA riders now can text for real-time arrival info - San Antonio Express-News

Let me just say this is a wonderful and amazing service! I've been using it since it was unveiled and it's VERY ACCURATE!

Why is this so great? As people who ride the bus can attest to, it can be quite frustrating to hurry and rush to get to the bus stop on time, only to wait an extra 10 to 15 minutes because the bus is running late (which happens more than 50% of the time). With this text messaging service, if you KNOW the bus is going to be running later than the scheduled time, then you can actually time it so that you leave to catch it at the time it will arrive late.

From any cell phone with text messaging capability, all you have to do it text the 5-digit bus stop number (where you want to catch the bus at) to VIA at 52020 and it will reply back with ALL the bus routes that stop at that location and their scheduled bus arrival times and (if there are any) the "GPS-estimated" bus arrival times for buses running late.

As a convenience, I have added some very frequent bus stops of mine. I have personally tested "all" these bus stop locations with the VIA text messaging service and like I said, it's VERY accurate and the text message is sent back within 10 seconds. If you have any you'd like to add, feel free to do so!

Bus Stops Locations:
ashby gillespie west 31639 -abandoned house
broadway josephine west 44679 -valero
cypress jackson north 56489 -john h sorola
five points north 56239 -rosenberg supply
frio martin east 76646 -brady green
frio chavez east 86926 -utsa downtown
main ashby east 38783 -fiesta store
mccullough huisache north 29356 -coffeplace
mccullough dewey north 49256 -sandwhich garden
mccullough melrose south 89557 -don's & ben's
rector ahern west 78539 -northstarmall (south end)
san pedro ashby north 37746 -temple beth el
san pedro ashby east 37773 -temple beth el
san pedro SAC north 47356 -SAC
san pedro oblate south 17227 -HEB
san pedro rector south 77559 -taco cabana
st marys josephine west 42119 -josephine theater
st marys 281 south 23619 -ymca
st marys courtland east 31867 -teka molino
st marys dewey north 42116 -(across) blond lighting
281 bitters south 62787 -goodwill
North Star Transit Center (2,5) 10059 -southside
North Star Transit Center (3) 10049 -southside
North Star Transit Center (4) 10039 -southside

Last edited by xsa210tx; 05-12-2012 at 10:28 AM..
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Old 05-12-2012, 10:20 AM
 
Location: San Antonio
105 posts, read 101,096 times
Reputation: 76
I sure needed this yesterday. The 96 was 10 minutes late and I missed my transfer, right as the rain started, too.
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Old 05-12-2012, 06:26 PM
 
1,316 posts, read 1,912,949 times
Reputation: 918
Quote:
Originally Posted by makiten View Post
I sure needed this yesterday. The 96 was 10 minutes late and I missed my transfer, right as the rain started, too.
Well no more will it happen!
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Old 05-13-2012, 08:56 PM
 
144 posts, read 175,938 times
Reputation: 102
I want an app that shows me the current GPS locations of the buses!
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Old 05-14-2012, 07:01 AM
 
Location: san antonio
332 posts, read 244,685 times
Reputation: 207
isnt this the same as calling the number on the bus sign and getting updated info? the 2 times ive had to ride the nightmare known as the SA VIA, the # on the bus sign told me what time the bus would be there and if it was running late, it would announce that as well.
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Old 05-14-2012, 10:03 AM
 
130 posts, read 126,135 times
Reputation: 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by markintosh View Post
I want an app that shows me the current GPS locations of the buses!

Same!
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Old 05-14-2012, 10:41 AM
 
Location: Texas
391 posts, read 302,482 times
Reputation: 485
I would just like VIA to offer an efficient and timely method
to get downtown on the weekend from Schertz... where I
don't first have to drive to some location.
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Old 05-14-2012, 03:15 PM
 
144 posts, read 175,938 times
Reputation: 102
So I tried it... Works great! Hats off to VIA. I hope it continues to work well as more and more people use the service...

And I went back and read the article... Apparently there IS an app coming from them soon! Woohoo! But this is good enough in the meantime...
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Old 05-14-2012, 03:21 PM
 
144 posts, read 175,938 times
Reputation: 102
Including a link to the VIA page about it. Two cool things to note (or if you don't want to read it...)

1) "You can also send an email to NextBus@viainfo.net with your bus stop number in the subject field" - sweet for people without texting but a smartphone (like I used to be)

2) Re: Bus Stop #s...: "In addition bus stop numbers can be found online at maps.google.com. Once on Google you can zoom down to reveal blue bus stop symbols. Select your stop and the bus stop number is included in the stop details."



http://www.viainfo.net/BusService/NextBusTerms.aspx
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Old 05-15-2012, 01:59 PM
 
1,316 posts, read 1,912,949 times
Reputation: 918
Quote:
Originally Posted by markintosh View Post
Including a link to the VIA page about it. Two cool things to note (or if you don't want to read it...)

1) "You can also send an email to NextBus@viainfo.net with your bus stop number in the subject field" - sweet for people without texting but a smartphone (like I used to be)

2) Re: Bus Stop #s...: "In addition bus stop numbers can be found online at maps.google.com. Once on Google you can zoom down to reveal blue bus stop symbols. Select your stop and the bus stop number is included in the stop details."



Untitled Page
Yes, I saw that too about the email...that's pretty neat.

I've known about being able to see the bus stop numbers on Google Maps; I'm glad you mentioned it as that will help a lot of people who may want to look it up rather than finding out what it is when they show up at that bus stop.

Good job!
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