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Translink Buzzer Blog

Looking for two testers to test existing Real-Time Transit Information and help us look to the future

Testers will provide feedback on the latest and past updates to nb.translink.ca

It’s that time again to invite Buzzer Blog readers to help us shape what the mobile site will look like in the near future. The first Real-Time Next BusInformation beta testing happened before the launch of m.translink.ca in the fall. Since then, we’ve updated the Next Bus map so you can click on any bus stop # and get schedule and bus information that corresponds to it, search by route # and location, as well as search by the path your bus takes and save your favourite bus route and stops. The old Trip Planner map was also replaced with a Google map update as well as email and print options added.

Now that we are coming to the end of the mobile site’s beta period, the mobile team would like to look back at what’s been already released as well as look forward to the final beta phase before the site is officially launched. The in-person Buzzer Blog testing and the comments left on this and other new mobile site Buzzer Blog posts all contribute to making the new site as good and as user friendly as possible.

Who the mobile team is looking for

The team is looking for two Buzzer Blog readers who are regular Metro Vancouver bus users and use m.translink.ca and Next Bus in particular on a regular basis. Preference is for a person who is a user of the technology and not someone with a software engineering background. The team is also looking for someone who accesses the new mobile site using either a smartphone running Android 2.3  or an iPhone 3GS, 4 or 4S.

Where, when and what

Where: Chosen testers will be asked to report to the 16th Floor reception in Metrotower II, 1600 – 4720 Kingsway (not far from the Metrotown SkyTrain station)
When: Tuesday, February 7th, 2012. One tester will be asked to arrive no later than 10 a.m., the other 2 p.m. The testing will take approximately 45 minutes.
What: Testers will be asked to use the mobile site while being videoed via webcam so our mobile team can learn from what they do. They may also be asked some questions about their thoughts on the site and how they think it can be improved. Finally, they will also be asked to provide feedback on the newest phase of the mobile site—predicting when your bus will actually arrive!!! Yes, the next phase of the mobile site will calibrate where you are, show you where the bus is as well as tell you as best as possible when you should be at your bus stop so you won’t miss the bus!
Chosen testers will be given Fare Saver tickets to cover the cost of getting to and from Metrotower II as well as a gift certificate for a meal.

How to become a tester

If you fit the description of the type of tester the mobile team is look for, then please send me an email to thebuzzer@translink.ca with the subject line “I want to be a second-round tester.” In the body of the email, please leave your full name, phone number, type of phone and operating system used, preferred testing time (if you have one), and a statement of what you like best and least about the new mobile site in 100 words or less. That’s it! The mobile team and I will chose the two testers based on the information provided and notify them as of Friday, February 3, 2012.
I’ll be blogging about the testing, so I’ll want to take photos of the testers and ask a few questions. I haven’t seen the predictive phase of the mobile site in use myself, so this is a really exciting opportunity to see this new update for the first time! I look forward to your entries. Thanks everyone!

5 Comments

  • By Eric B, February 2, 2012 @ 9:00 am

    Awww, I’ll be working that day :( Can’t wait to see the results from this testing, though!

  • By Meraki, February 2, 2012 @ 3:52 pm

    I’ve submitted my application to you, though I have a question of why Android 2.3 is your minimum specification. Android 2.2 has 34% market share along 2.3’s 55% and it seems like a big section of the mobile market to be overlooking with the development of the site.

  • By Douglas, February 3, 2012 @ 4:26 pm

    Can’t help with testing but a recommendation for the site is to have the number keyboard come up as default when the viewer gets to the field for entering route or bus stop number. Now, each time I have to click to move from the alpha board to numerical.

  • By The Other David, February 4, 2012 @ 1:43 am

    Maybe this is an Android vs iPhone thing, but every time I use the realtime map, I click “-” 2 or 3 times to zoom out so I can see the closest bus. Every time. Maybe the default zoom is too.. zoomed?

Other Links to this Post

  1. The Buzzer blog » Real-time transit information beta test part II wrap-up — February 17, 2012 @ 3:53 pm

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