Smartphones & Bluetooth Beacons Make It Easy For Blind People To Catch Buses
BLE Beacon System illustration

BLE Beacon System

The city of Strasbourg is ready to make catching buses much easier for blind people. The buses will be equipped with BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy) beacons that will interact with the transport app on the blind commuter's phone. As a bus approaches  the bus stop, the beacon will "wake up" the phone app and transmit the bus information - route number, direction, arrival time, to the phone which will be immediately vocalized by the phone app so the blind person could hear it. ("Line 19, direction Arago, arrives in five seconds,") This becomes especially important when a bus stop services multiple bus routes going in different directions. The audio notification is translated in the language that's set on the user's phone.This system was tested over a six week period in November 2015 with 12 buses. After a lot of positive feedback from local associations for the disabled, this system is now ready to be deployed for daily use.
man tipping hat animation

Thanks to Assistive Technology Blog for the tip!

Source: Assistive Technology Blog: Smartphones & Bluetooth Beacons Make It Easy For Blind People To Catch Buses


The North Carolina Assistive Technology Program (NCATP) leads North Carolina's efforts to carry out the federal Assistive Technology Act of 2004. We promote independence for people with disabilities through access to technology. Visit our website at
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