The Indian Railways has become technologically advanced and has introduced cutting edge features. While earlier it was impossible for lay persons to track the movement of trains, today it has become child’s play. All you need is a mobile phone or a PC to do the trick.
In April 2012, Indian Railways brought forth beta version of their website trainenquiry.com, which reveals the running status of current and future trains. The Indian Railways National Train Enquiry System (NTES) developed the new trainenquiry.com site. It catered to the need of railway passengers and enhanced their online user experience.
What is great about the new version is that it is very user-friendly compared to other government websites. Also, the new website is lightening fast in its services.
The customer (passenger) need not know the details like train number or station code. All he has to do is key in station name and the screen will throw up details like trains, which are currently running or scheduled to run.
When user clicks on a train currently in transit, he will get a visual indicating where exactly the train is positioned and information whether it is early, on time or late. The visual also indicates how far it is from the previous stations, as well as from the coming station.
In October, the Centre for Railway Information Service (CRIS) introduced a new web application called as RailRadar, which provides train’s position on a map (a Google map) and displays the live train running status. The RailRadar system has been created by CRIS in collaboration with RailYatri.in team. One can access it at railradar.trainenquiry.com.
RailRadar offers data on 6500 trains among the 10,000 ones in operation. The service can be accessed by smart phones via their web browsers. Officials revealed that out of the 2 lakh hits captured by the service since its launch, 20% were through mobiles. The web was also fast replacing SMS as mode of train enquiry.?
RailRadar provides a user-friendly interface. Users are provided with a graphical representation in the form of a map. The map is interactive, zooming out and in to get details of trains and stations. This app allows customers to look for a train or station, train details in stations, status of trains such as their route, stoppages and location.
It also provides an idea on its on-time or delay status through a tie with trainenquiry.com. This is, especially, useful during a mishap or unplanned activity like diversions when users can track the position and movement of trains throughout the nation.
Currently, RailRadar is constructed to refresh details every 5 minutes. Updates on the train’s running status will be delayed by five minutes for regulatory and security reasons. Those trains running in time currently are marked by blue arrows while those which are late are marked by red arrows.
If you click on the particular arrow, an information box will open with train name, last update, last stop and next halt. The current status can be checked via a point in the box. The trains’ stops can be marked in the map for referring to, later.
As per RailRadar, train tracking can be done through the monitoring points for the trains passing throughout the nation at over 6000 locations.