Swiftly Release Notes

August release notes

Onboard App launch 

Swiftly’s Onboard App puts Swiftly’s best-in-class real-time data in front of vehicle operators to take the guesswork out of maintaining reliable transit service -- and in the process, rethinks the way your transit tools fit together. 

Onboard App runs on off-the-shelf Android or iOS devices -- typically tablets -- and  gives operators simple and immediate feedback about how they’re driving their route in the form of timing adherence (early/late/on time), empowering them to manage their own on-time performance and headway adherence in real time. It’s like a personal assistant for your operators, developed wholly with your operators in mind and based on operator feedback.

Improve on-time performance, mitigate early departures, improve vehicle location data, get visibility into contracted service, and wipe out any trip assignment issues with Onboard App.

Check out the full announcement post here.

Rider Alerts updates

As many of our agency partners adopt Rider Alerts, we’ve listened to your feedback and identified ways to make the product even more powerful. 

We released an update that enables alert authors and other agency staff to view the full content of an alert that has already been published. 

We also added the ability to add external URLs to an alert so that agencies can provide passengers with even more information and context. 

Manual assignment updates 

Accurate assignment is essential to providing reliable passenger information. We just released improvements to our manual assignment functionality to ensure that operators logging into Onboard App and assignment modifications made directly within Live Operations work seamlessly. In particular, these assignments are considered high-priority and will not be overridden by other, automated sources of assignment such as a CAD/AVL feed or Swiftly’s auto-assigner. If a vehicle assigned by an operator or dispatcher goes off-route, rather than becoming unassigned as before, it will retain assignment and show “Performance Unavailable” in the Swiftly products until the vehicle returns to the route.

Link to August 2020 release notes

July release notes

High-Resolution Speeds in Speed Map

The lockdowns earlier this year were among the most disruptive months in modern history. But for transit agencies, there was an unlikely silver lining: traffic congestion virtually disappeared on city streets, giving a clear picture of the “true potential” of transit lines. This provides invaluable data around which bottlenecks are connected to traffic and which are in agencies’ own hands. 

As lockdowns end and traffic congestion returns, agencies will face the same operational challenges as before the pandemic. So how do agencies ensure they can take the learnings of their “true potential” while avoiding type new operational problems presented by the pandemic? 

Swiftly’s existing Speed Map module already makes it easy to find the bottlenecks in your transit network by visualizing the actual speeds your vehicles travel from stop to stop. 

We’ve now taken it one step further by adding the High-Resolutions Speeds View, which adds extra granularity, allowing you to see what’s happening to vehicle speeds at each segment between stops. 

Are slowdowns happening at specific intersections despite congestion-free conditions? Do certain corridors need “emergency bus lanes” like the ones set up by SFMTA or the MBTA? Segment-Level Speed Map makes it simple to determine.

SMS and Voice

In order to allay fears around COVID-19, over-communication is key. It helps restore confidence and provide certainty in an atmosphere of uncertainty. Transit agencies must effectively communicate with passengers and provide a host of options, from apps and signage to websites and texts, so riders can decide which medium is right for them based on convenience and accessibility. 

To restore ridership agencies need to re-establish rider confidence through accurate, reliable information, accessible through a number of mediums. With Swiftly SMS and Voice passengers can simply text or call a number and receive predictions about when the next vehicle will arrive for their stop and route. Many passengers prefer the simplicity of SMS and Voice to using an app, especially when they take the same route every day. Further, SMS and Voice provides access to predictions on to go for passengers without smartphones.

With Swiftly SMS and Voice, agencies can provide passengers with the same, accurate predictions powered by Swiftly Transitime found in apps, signage, and their website over text and voice. 

Link to July 2020 release notes

June release notes

Real-Time Crowding

Maintaining social distancing guidelines has emerged as one of the toughest challenges for transit agencies during the pandemic. To address this, we’ve launched Real-Time Crowding, a new data feature that helps passengers determine if vehicles are safe to board or if they should wait for the next one as well as helps dispatchers identify opportunities to add new service to help alleviate crowding.

Real-Time Crowding is shared with riders through your GTFS-realtime data feed with passenger counts from your AVL or APC feeds or other onboard hardware. By including this information in your GTFS-realtime feeds, Transit, Google Maps, and other apps will automatically display your real-time occupancy level of each of your vehicles.

Our Stop Details Panel, Reimagined 

Our new Stop Details Panel makes it easier to zoom in on details about stops, including upcoming vehicles and predicted arrivals times, while viewing your entire network. As you’re examining your network use the “Locate Stop on Map” button to re-center on the selected stop, which is shown with a larger dot and labeled with the stop ID. 

Just like in our Live Map, you can now also click on stops within our Live Ladder to see the Stop Details Panel. 

See Your Missing Service in Real Time

Unassigned trips create ghost buses--service that’s expected by riders looking at a schedule but isn’t showing predictions--and quickly finding them is essential for providing accurate real-time information to your passengers. With Live Operations, find your missing service by looking for scheduled trips labeled "missing."

On Live Ladder, you can also find unassigned trips, which are shown where they are expected to be based on the schedule. 

Link to June 2020 release notes

May release notes

Rider Alerts

Rider Alerts allows transit agencies to easily communicate service interruptions -- such as service cancellations, detours, stop closures, and significant delays -- to riders wherever they get their transit information. 

Rider Alerts provides a simple way for agencies to send information to trip planning apps, so riders can more easily adjust their travel plans, as well as send modified routing information to navigation apps, so riders don’t have to think about it in the first place. In Transit App, passengers can also subscribe to alerts so that they get notified as soon as you publish new information.

Rider Alerts publishes a GTFS-rt Alerts feed, an open data standard, so any app can incorporate these messages. Our open ecosystem also makes it easy for agencies to integrate Rider Alerts through to their own apps, signage, websites, social media, and more. This means that passengers will see the same alerts wherever they get their information. 

We’re offering Rider Alerts to agencies at no cost through September. Learn more.

Live Operations 

Live Operations helps agencies get proactive about vehicle spacing by flagging, in real time, the vehicles that are contributing most to bunching, gapping, and poor schedule adherence. Live Operations has three views: 

1. The Live Map shows where on a map each of your vehicles currently is located (current Swiftly customers will already be familiar with our Live Map); 

2. The new Live List makes it simple to sort vehicles by early/late or bunched/gapped and isolate the biggest offenders, so agencies can send out specific instructions to get these vehicles back on track; 

3. The new Live Ladder gives a precise, real-time picture of the spacing of every vehicle in your network, updated every few seconds.

Link to May 2020 release notes

March release notes

Vehicle ID labels

Turn on vehicle IDs alongside vehicle markers in Live Map and GPS Playback to easily track particular vehicles as they travel This gives operations and customer service the additional detail they need at a glance. 

Special handling for last stop OTP - now in Operator Reports 

Last month we released new last stop on-time performance handling options, and we’ve just put on the finishing touches so that these settings apply in our newest module, Operator Reports, as well! Choose from three last stop OTP handling types to customize your OTP calculations. Reach out to your Customer Success Manager if you’re interested in changing your agency’s parameters. 

Headways API

We’re committed to making our data easy to access and use for our customers, whether it’s in the Swiftly dashboard or through our APIs. This month we released our Headways API so that you can use historical data about bunching and gapping beyond the Swiftly Dashboard. To access the Headways API, navigate to the API guide in the menu bar. Don’t have access? Reach out to get an API key. 

Live Operations update

We are opening up Live Operations (our updated Live Map module) to beta customers. Let us know if you’re interested in early access to real-time list and route ladder views. We’ve been working with several agencies already to highlight the biggest trouble spots and get ahead of reliability issues as they come up during live operations.

Link to March 2020 release notes

February release notes

New options for handling last stops in On-Time Performance

At Swiftly, we want to make it easy for your whole agency -- from operations and scheduling to customer service and planning -- to share a single data source, eliminating departmental data silos so everyone is looking at the same metrics. 

Now, Swiftly Dashboard can better capture your agency’s on-time performance definitions beyond setting on-time thresholds. By default, the last stop of a trip is treated as any other stop. In response to customer feedback, we now have two additional options for handling last stops: 

Option 1: treat an early arrival at the last stop as "on-time" for the purposes of the on-time performance metric

Option 2: remove last stops completely from on-time performance metrics

Option 3 (default): treat the last stop the same as any other stop

Your agency’s configuration will show in the Filter Panel under “Last Stop Handling.” Reach out if you’re interested in changing your agency’s on-time performance parameters. 

Adjust time ranges 

There’s a new way to easily adjust the time range across modules to an exact time. Simply click the time range fields and type in the appropriate time. As before, you can still drag the time ranges. 

Up next: List & Ladder View

Keep your eyes out for Swiftly’s newest features - List and Ladder View. The new features will enable Operations to quickly prioritize vehicles with substantial deviation from their schedule or headway as well as understand vehicle spacing and layovers at a glance to minimize or eliminate the impact on passengers. 

Interested in beta testing List and Ladder? Reach out

Link to February 2020 release notes

January release notes

Timepoints in Live Map

In Live Map you can now see timepoints as filled stops to visualize on-time performance and headways at the timepoint level.

GPS Playback Controls

GPS Playback is now even easier to use and comes with more control. We added a play button and different speeds.

We also built more ways to quickly access GPS Playback. Click through from the vehicle information view in Live Map, schedule view in the On-Time Performance module, or trip by trip performance in Operator Reports.

Active Blocks API

The Active Blocks API enables you to easily fetch information on currently active blocks. The data, organized by route, includes scheduled trip information and, if available, any vehicle details associated with the block. 

Learn more about this and all of our APIs by clicking on “API Guide” from the top-right Menu. Not seeing it? Reach out to our team to get a new API key to start building your own custom applications and reports on top of Swiftly.

Link to January 2020 release notes

December release notes

Operator Reports module

The first transit tool to give agencies a data-driven, objective perspective into how operators are driving their routes and executing their schedules. 

You can use Operator Reports to view which operators are adhering to their schedules, recognize operators who might need coaching, and identify reliability issues that might stem from unrealistic schedules.

Read the full blog

Link to December 2019 release notes

November release notes

Enhancements to Live Map and GPS Playback

"Non-revenue” trips are now called “layover/deadhead” to more accurately reflect what the vehicle is doing. We changed these layover/deadhead trips from purple to gray to put more focus on vehicles carrying passengers and to pave the way for more enhancements coming soon!

Now you can jump to Satellite view in any of the Swiftly maps with a click. Or, check out Street View by clicking on any stop in Live Map or GPS Playback to get a feel for amenities and geography.

New ways to access Suggested Run-Times data

Swiftly’s Suggested Run-Times can reduce run-times analysis from weeks to minutes, but we know there’s still a lot more work to turn real-world run-times into schedules that factor in resources and staffing. We’ve added a download format, “Stops as rows,” to the Suggested Run-Times view that makes it easier to consolidate route-by-route downloads and do additional analysis.

On-Time Performance Route Groups

Route groups in the On-Time Performance module enable you to sort performance by express routes, garages, or modes of transportation. Each might have different conditions, different staff, and even different key performance metrics. Often, these groups want the ability to check only their own performance -- what they can influence -- to get to the bottom of the effects of changes. And hey, we've even heard that some folks use it to spawn a little healthy competition!

Reach out to your customer success manager to pin down which route groups make sense for you agency.

Link to November 2019 release notes

October release notes

Interlinked modules

Combining real-time and historical insights are essential to forming a complete and accurate picture of your transit network. That’s why we’re making our modules even more connected. When viewing a vehicle in live map in real time you can now click directly through to GPS playback to see what that vehicle did at any point in the past on that route.

Link to October 2019 release notes

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