Citymapper, a iOS app that uses real-time transit information and up-to-date service advisories to provide its users with a wealth of travel information within the five boroughs, won a $20,000 prize in the MTA and AT&T’s 2013 App Quest contest, the agency announced today. The app comes with a web component and can even tell users how many calories they’ve burned on a trip throughout the city. It’s not quite transformational or quirky, but it works.
This year’s App Quest launched in May and featured 49 submissions. My personal favorite in terms of creativity was an Android app called MetroNap that uses motion sensors to wake up the user when he or she reaches a destination. It did not walk away with a prize though from the panel of nine members of the city’s burgeoning tech and V.C. industry.
In addition to Citymapper, five other apps walked away with cash prizes. Subculture.FM allows uses to get more information on the artists who participate in the Music Under New York program; Transit App, my current go-to for train arrival times and trip instructions, took home $5000. Accessway, an accessibility app for visually impaired riders, and Bus NYC, which taps into the BusTime API, garnered honorable mentions, and Moovit, yet another mapping app, was the winner of the popular vote.
“The app developers who competed in this challenge have shown that they have the know-how, the enthusiasm, and the energy to do great things with the open data we and others provide,” Thomas Prendergast, MTA Chairman and CEO, said. “And we are glad that so many in the tech community have put their efforts into helping the MTA, and, more importantly, our customers. That’s why we are going to continue to expand the amount of open data we provide.”
Once again, the MTA, with a fiscal assist from AT&T, decided to outsource app programming to the benefit of the riders, and we have a new series of apps to use, enjoy and, sometimes, delete. Check out all of the submissions right here.
Apologies for the short post tonight. I have an early morning meeting on Wednesday, but I’ll be back with a new edition of the podcast, among others, later on this morning.