The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) has released an iPhone app called MTA Subway Time that allows New Yorkers on 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 subway lines and the S 42nd Street Shuttle to know precisely when trains are expected to arrive at stations.
MTA will also be providing a free live stream of arrival time data to third-party app developers, so that they can incorporate it in their apps.
MTA Chairman and CEO Joseph J. Lhota had this to say about the release of the app:
“Today is the day that generations of dreamers and futurists have waited for,” said MTA Chairman and CEO Joseph J. Lhota. “The ability to get subway arrival time at street level is here. The days of rushing to a subway station only to find yourself waiting motionless in a state of uncertainty are coming to an end. Now, you can know from the comfort of your home or office whether to hasten to the station, or grab a cup of coffee as part of a leisurely walk.”
Here’s how commuters can use the iPhone app:
MTA Subway Time is designed to be quick to load and easy to use. The opening screen displays icons for the subway lines served by the app. Select a line to see all the stations it serves, then select a station to see real-time arrival estimates for up to nine trains approaching that station from each direction. For simplicity, stations that serve multiple lines show all trains combined in a single list.
The arrival time estimates can be refreshed anytime by touching the icon in the upper right of the screen. The exact time the data was provided is displayed at the bottom of the screen.
MTA plans to add arrival time data for the L line in the next six to 12 months. The arrival time data for the 7 Line will be added to MTA Subway Time after the signaling is upgraded to Communications Based Train Control (CBTC), which is expected to be completed only in 2016.
You can download the app for free from the App Store using this direct iTunes link.