"We’re giving the public a taste of what a Virgin Hyperloop One experience will be like."
The public have been given the chance to better imagine how hyperloop could fit into their lives after a leading developer of the frictionless travel system, Virgin Hyperloop One, unveiled version 1.0 of its end-to-end route navigation app.
Virgin Hyperloop One, the company that in December 2017 added the Virgin brand name and received £37m ($50m) of investment from Richard Branson's company, first showed the app designed for real-time, on-demand travel at the Las Vegas tech show, CES 2018. Also at the show, the company also displayed its first-generation pod which achieved record speeds of 240mph (387kph) in July 2017, One XP-1.
The app was developed by Here Technologies and works in much the same way as travel-orientated apps currently available, such as Citymapper, by enabling those using it to plan the most efficient route. Where Virgin Hyperloop One’s app will differ, however, is the functionality to book and pay for a hyperloop journey and other modes of transportation including public, private, and ride-shares.
Powering the app is Here Technologies’ Mobile Software Development Kit for Business, which puts detailed location, mapping, and navigation capabilities in 136 countries for public transit information for more than 1,300 cities at users’ fingertips. Virgin Hyperloop One has said that the app will, for the first time, feature turn-by-turn navigation in indoor environments, providing walking directions to help passengers negotiate large transit centres, venues, shopping centres and airports. Due for release sometime this year, The Virgin Hyperloop One app will also be able to filter journeys by cheapest and greenest.
Virgin Hyperloop One’s senior vice president of software engineering, Matt Jones, said that the app would end the need for passengers to wait “any point along the journey”. “HERE shares our vision for optimising travel. We will redefine the passenger experience by offering real time, on demand travel connecting hyperloop, other modes, and even indoor walking directions,” said Jones.
Commenting on the app but also the public’s first opportunity to see the pod that last year achieved record speeds in the Nevada desert, chief executive officer of Virgin Hyperloop One, Rob Lloyd, said developments of hardware and software brought the company closer to commercialising it.
“We’re giving the public a taste of what a Virgin Hyperloop One experience will be like by publicly unveiling our pod and demonstrating how passengers will experience booking a hyperloop trip from their pocket,” said Lloyd.
You may also be interested in this from SmartRail World…