Deloitte: Big data transforms public transport sector

17 June 2013 Consultancy.uk

The application of new technologies such as Big Data and Analytics will cause a mega transition within the public transport sector the coming years.

The isolated and individualist transport system as we currently know it will gradually shift towards an integrated 'digital transport system', a world where data and connectivity will lead to an optimized system for both individual commuters and society as a whole. This is concluded by accounting and consultancy firm Deloitte in the report 'Digital Age Transportation.

15 transport trends

In the study, the consulting firm distinguishes more than 15 technology-driven trends that will provide the transport sector with unprecedented opportunities. At a macro level there are several innovations that can improve efficiency within communities, such as car sharing, ride sharing and bike sharing in addition, there are several smart technologies focused on expanding the efficiency and ease of use of individuals, such as real-time traffic management, multi-modal transport, connected and autonomous vehicles.

Deloitte - OV en Transport Trends

Two developments stand at the heart of the digital transport system: the development of 'connected vehicles' and an 'integrated mobility system'. Deloitte compares the impact of the prior factor with the recent mega transition in the telecom sector. "Similar to the way telephones have evolved into smartphones, over the next 10 years automobiles will rapidly become 'connected vehicles' that access, consume, and create information and share it with drivers, passengers and public infrastructure". The 'integrated mobility system' - stimulated by both public and private initiatives - will serve as the supporting infrastructure.

Data Availability

Main condition for a digital transport system is the availability of data. "In order to understand the choices of travelers and to take decisions quickly travelers should have access to real-time reporting of traffic situations, including forecasts. Only then people can opt for the fastest and most economical way to travel", says Frank de Bont, a partner at Deloitte.

Next Steps

The consultancy firm advises governments and carriers to come with concrete follow-up steps quickly. "The government in collaboration with both the freight transport and the public transport sector still has to make some steps" says De Bont. "In addition to making it possible on a technical level and adjusting laws and regulations, the report shows that there are other ways of thinking that should be considered when it comes to mobility". 

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