E-readers are already prolific on London's public transport – and now the same tech is being built into the transport infrastructure itself. Transport for London (TfL) is trialling e-ink digital displays to provide passengers with travel information. Maps, timetable and arrival times are shown in real time.
Volvo is to introduce its hybrid buses to India next year. It says it is the first bus manufacturer to do so. The hybrids will begin running as part of a pilot in Navi Mumbai, a planned township to the south of Mumbai, and its surrounding areas.
A driverless bus developed by French firm EasyMile is to go into operation at a business park in California and a park in Singapore. The EZ10 is operated entirely autonomously and doesn't even have a steering wheel. Easymile says it hopes to have 100-200 EZ10s in operation by 2017.
One of the biggest limitations of electric buses is range. Now, though, a US company has eked out over 250 miles (402 km) from one of its electric buses. The Proterra Catalyst XR is said to afford the best efficiency rating ever for a 40-ft (12-m) transit bus, at 22 mpg (12.8 l/l00 km) equivalent.
London's public transport network is about to get a lot greener, with Mayor Boris Johnson announcing that the world's first purpose-built pure electric double-decker bus will hit the city's streets later this year. The announcement was made at the Clean Bus Summit, where 24 cities around the world committed to putting ultra-low emission buses on the road.
Romanian tech firm Onyx Beacon is teaming up with the local authorities in Bucharest to install 500 iBeacon devices on buses across the metropolis. It's hoped that the new Smart Public Transport (SPT) initiative will make the city safer and more accessible for the estimated 12,000 visually impaired citizens who live there.
If electric buses are ever going to become a common sight in cities
around the world, then they'll need to be able to operate like their
traditional counterparts. This means no taking long breaks to recharge,
or sacrificing seating space for the storage of huge batteries. While
allowing them to draw power from the road
is one alternative, the European EDDA Bus consortium is working on
another – electric buses that can grab a quick charge at bus stops in
just a few minutes.