Slightly OT – Bus API – London's first live bus countdown app

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This topic contains 15 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by  stile1201 6 years, 10 months ago.

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    Hi all

    As this is a page for developers using TfL data, thought I’d share the announcement of London’s first bus countdown app at

    Currently iPhone-only but buzz me if you want details of the API for other devices, etc.

    o Live, updated ‘countdown’ display of arrivals.

    (NOT limited to scheduled bus timetables like existing apps)

    o Works with 19,000 bus stops throughout London.

    o GPS-enabled map of nearby bus stops.

    o Live diversion/cancellation information.

    o Customisable: filter by route, or by favourite bus stops.




    “This app is currently not available in the UK store, but it is available in the US store”.


    UPDATE: If you try and buy it on the US store it says it’s not available there either.

    Well done, Apple. ;)



    Er.. ..that’s my fault. Sorry. I should have said – it’s not launched until tomorrow! Tuesday 27th Sep.

    You were a little quicker than I anticipated!



    The information is available on TFL’s website –

    It has a normal version and a mobile version.



    I’d expect a flood of these, esp once TFL does their “proper” api

    Including mine, which is nearly done…. :)



    Also nice to see you are charging for it. All the free barclays hire apps p’ed me right off.



    How does it differ from the free TfL site? Countdown

    As far as I can see, it offers exactly the same thing, but with a skin on it. Whilst the TfL site is not an “app” as such, if you simply save it as a shortcut on one of your menu screens, it effectively becomes one.



    I can’t speak for Carlos, but:

    more location awareness

    better UI


    things like favourates

    Same reasons you would use the mail app on an iphone vrs using gmail in the browser.

    I tried the save-to-desktop thing, which is one reason why I wrote the app :)



    I suppose that’s what you get for having a fashion accessory as a phone! :P

    Works fine on Android :)



    How do you make it quicker to serve the data than the TfL site?

    TfL also does favourites.

    I’m not trying to put down your efforts, but I’m struggling to see what people are going to get for their money instead of the perfectly usable free version.



    I have tried this and also the cheaper nextbus app. Both have UI advantages compared to the web app particularly the google map integration.

    Of the two, I’d say buschecker is more polished, with a better maps UI but I find its fake bus stop streetscene for displaying the countdown very cluttered. would prefer the option of no fake bus background + larger text.

    Nextbus is 1/3 the price and also displays timetable info.

    I bet if you wait a week a free alternative will come along but for now these apps are pretty good.



    Thanks everyone for all input and feedback – it’s been quite a week. Bus Checker is doing really well, and seems to be going down excellently with consumers. Big update on the way too.

    @cyclingnewbie I was interested to read your feedback on UI clutter; perhaps an option to disable the background in the next update?

    @nic.wise Appreciate comments re: pricing etc.

    @PM / 7209 – I think nic covered it off really; advantages over the web are mainly geo-location and load time. Also as it uses the native UI it’s more responsive. As a side note, at the moment, I believe many users have an innate preference for native apps over web apps. This will change over time, as people get used to HTML5 and the benefits it offers, but for now it’s something we developers should embrace.

    Thanks again for all feedback




    New version of app is a masterpiece Carlos. Fluid and intuitive.

    I have just three requests.

    Can we make the text on the countdown displays larger?

    Can you add GPS route tracking to the route feature?

    Can you make a Boris bike app?!!!



    And to add to the growing list of apps which use the Countdown data:

    “Standing at a London Bus Stop, wondering when the bus is going to show up? Nearest Bus will find the stop you are at, and tell you when the next bus is going to arrive.”




    Carlos – your route listings in the app need to be updated to include Stratford City…

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