Some of us in the DC office are frequent users of the Metrobus system, but we couldn't find a public transit app that suited our needs.
We created an app for iOS called Bus Stop DC that directly sources WMATA (Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority) feeds to let users find bus stops closest to them, receive bus arrival predictions, and receive real-time schedule updates. When the Apple Watch came out, we seized the opportunity to get some watchOS development experience while also using the wearable paradigm to make the user experience better. The Apple Watch app includes a “glance” view that shows users the arrival time of the next bus at the nearest stop.
We gained a sense of how real-time feeds from a mass transit system can be of value and we're learning how to interact with the Apple Watch and other wearables. Also, we earned the trust of a few hundred bus riders and got a nice nod from The Washington Post in its reviews of commuter apps.
We created an Alexa skill that integrates with our beacon- and Slack-enabled Mission Data Office app. Staffers can ask the Amazon Echo to identify the specific location of someone in the office. We also created a skill for Alexa to tell our DC staffers which food trucks are outside the office at any given time.
We're exploring business use cases for virtual reality, including engaging virtual tours.