How? The Philippines’ Department of Transport and Communications, together with Metro Manila Development Authority and Cebu City Government, hosted a national transport app development competition, The Philippine Transit App Challenge. Of the 17 entries, five promising transport apps stood out:
Manila Train Guide
In addition to the graphic guide, a sidebar also shows more information like how long trip will take, how to walk from one station to another, and the cost of a specific trip.
Commuters can get route directions via SMS by sending “route” followed by place of origin to destination. However, the team says people who use this feature will have to be more specific when keying in locations because it won’t have the auto-populate feature like the web app. Meanwhile, people who intend to use the web app can print the directions as shown on the site.
Apart from the government, the Philippine Transit App Challenge has also been supported by local and international institutions such as Philippine telco Smart Communications and its subsidiaries – telco Sun Cellular, app maker Voyager Innovations and incubator IdeaSpace Foundation. Worldbank and Mozilla also contribute. These apps, which recently were no more than ideas, could become part of every commuter’s tool in their day-to-day travel to work or school.