A Case Study

mobile devices + EcoSignSystem

During 2012, Derby City Council installed 1,000 plus
MOGO ‘Next Bus Signs’
interacting with mobile devices.



Bus passengers can now find out when their next bus is due – just by holding up their mobile phones / devices to these signs.

In summer 2012, this accessible technology was installed on several routes in Derby. Owing to the success of the trials, this interactive signage system was then extended throughout the city and surrounding areas.  When a passenger taps or scans a ‘Next Bus Sign’ interactive tag, using a smartphone / device, they are directed to a landing page which then gives direct access to the time of arrival of the next bus; they can also choose to access other associated websites.

Passenger Transport Coordination and Strategy Team Leader, Chris Hegarty says: ” Improving the quality of information available to bus passengers was one of the key elements in the Derby bid for funding from the DfT Better Bus project “Derby – Better by Bus”.

We had previously undertaken a small scale trial of MOGO Next Bus Signs and these had been well received. Now as part of the Derby ‘Better by Bus’ project we are increasing the number of stops which have these MOGO signs to cover virtually the whole city.

Because they are easy to produce and install, we are rolling this scheme out as a quick win in our Better Bus project”

Ranjit Banwait

Councillor Ranjit Banwait, Derby CC cabinet member for Neighbourhoods and Streetpride,



Councillor Ranjit Banwait said: “Improving public transport for the people of Derby is a clear priority for the newly-established Strategic Bus Partnership and a manifesto commitment. The ‘Magic Touch’ technology will go a significant way to encouraging more people to travel by bus.”




                                                 The innovation uses a wireless technology called Near Field Communication.

NFC Logo

No power supply is needed, as the phone activates a hidden tag when it comes within two centimetres of the sign. For an up to date list of mobile phones with NFC capability, see: http://www.nfcworld.com/nfc-phones-list.

NBS on pole with RTI Box

'Next Bus Signs' act as a bookmark and can provide more information than an RTI box

And for those without the latest phone, they will still be able to get information on bus times using the new signs and their mobiles. 1/ They can text the bus stop’s unique code, shown on the sign, and within seconds receive a text with the arrival time of the next three buses. 2/ For those with mobile phones with basic internet connectivity, they can enter the bus stop’s individual URL by hand. 3/ Finally, a newer technology for smart phone users is to scan a barcode (QR code) and within seconds you will be directed to latest information for buses from that particular stop.

Placing a mobile phone in front of 'Next Bus Sign'

Placing a mobile phone in front of a 'Next Bus Sign'




The first routes to be fitted with the new signs are the 42/43 and 44/45 services to Alvaston run by Arriva.

Trent will also be having them on routes, starting with the Sixes and the Allestree buses.


A spokesman for Arriva Midlands said: “We welcome the introduction of new technology that will provide quick and easier access to local bus times and routes.”

NBS on flat on Shelter

A 'Next Bus Sign' easily attached to flat surface of bus shelter

The signs have been funded through the £2.1 million Better Bus Area Fund and will be extended to other routes up to Christmas.

Trent Barton commercial director Alex Hornby said: “We’re pleased to see the city council concentrating the recent award of government funding on projects that help to enhance the overall customer experience.”

Based on article taken from ‘Derby Telegraph’ – Thursday, August 09, 2012

NFC and Buses

More about ‘Next Bus Signs’

More about NFC

MOGO Back Office Systems Services (BOSS)


Information, right on time