What you need to know
- Google has created the Waze of public transit with the new Pigeon app.
- Pigeon allows commuters to report incidents such as crowd sizes, power outages, live performers, and more.
- It's currently only available for iOS devices, but you can sign up to be notified when it is released for Android.
If you've ever used public transit before, you know it can sometimes be a mess — delays are inevitable and sometimes cannot be helped. However, what if you could know about these delays in advance and could plan around them? That's what Pigeon sets out to do via crowdsourcing. Think of it as Waze for public transit.
The app was created in Google's Area 120 incubator and was first released back in September 2018 for New York City commuters. Now, Google is announcing Pigeon's expansion to five new cities, including Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Washington, D.C.
With the app, users will be able to help other commuters daily by reporting real-time information about power outages, major service changes, crowd sizes, or other unexpected incidents. Commuters can even report information such as live entertainment, dirty or unsafe conditions, or an escalator outage. Plus, you'll also be able to share your commuting experience with others, whether it's venting about the delays or commenting on talented buskers you saw performing this morning.
Pigeon will then take these reports and add them to a live activity feed and map, allowing you to view comments and images from other commuters along your route. What's even better is Pigeon can also send "customized notifications to commuters before they leave their home or office, so that they can plan around delays, reroutes and even the weather."
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