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News

Transport Planners Track Passengers via Phone Wifi

04 October by Mark Maultby

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London Underground have published their findings from 4 week trial to track passenger movements undertaken earlier this year, which uses passenger mobile phone wifi to track movements through the transport network.

TfL tracked 5.6 million passengers via their phone wifi to gain a better understanding of how people are using the underground; their entry and exit to the stations, where they change and what routes they are taking.

The data collected will be used to improve the passenger experience and reduce overcrowding.

The data is "de-personalised", no browsing data is collected and passengers had the option to opt-out. 

Wifi tracking was activated at 54 London Underground stations within Zones 1-4 and collected in real-time.  The findings, published this month give a significant insight into how TfL have used the technology to create a more comprehensive picture of the passenger flow.

The study has already revealed that passengers use at least 18 different routes while travelling from King's Cross St Pancras to Waterloo, and 40 per cent don't take the fastest routes.

Val Shawcross, deputy mayor for transport, said: “We’re determined to use the latest technology to improve the experience of every passenger using transport in London, and I’m delighted the trial has been a success.

“The analysis of secure, de-personalised wifi data could enable us to map the journey patterns of millions of passengers and understand in much greater detail how people move around our transport network."

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