The public can now access real-time information on the availability of buses on their routes thanks to the new mobile app Smart Mobility Operation Cloud (SMOC).
This comes following a memorandum of cooperation signing between Zenmov Inc and five bus operating companies for the Pilot Project Bus Passenger Information System – yesterday.
The pilot project sees collaboration between the Ministry of Transport and Infocommunications (MTIC) of Brunei Darussalam and the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT) of Japan, through the Smart City supported by the Japan ASEAN Mutual Partnership (Smart JAMP) programme under the ASEAN Smart Cities Network (ASCN).
The pilot project is part of governmental efforts to improve the quality of the public bus transportation system, in line with the initiatives and action plans of the MTIC 2025 Strategic Plan and the ministry’s vision towards becoming a ‘Connected Smart Nation.’
The mobile application that provides real-time movement and location of public buses was introduced to help users plan their journey easily.
The project covers six main lines in the Brunei-Muara District for a minimum period of four months, starting December 2022. MLIT appointed Japan-based company Zenmov Inc to provide the system and application, as well as training of bus operators.
The signing ceremony at the MTIC involved Syarikat Kerjasama Kenderaan dan Pengangkutan Mukim Pengkalan Batu dengan Tanggungan Berhad, PHLS Sdn Bhd, ADBS Sdn Bhd, Syarikat Kerjasama Kampong Tanjong Nangka (SATENAGA) dengan Tanggungan Berhad, and Koperasi Tasamul Mukim Lumapas Berhad.
Permanent Secretary at the MTIC cum guest of honour Ir Haji Mohammad Nazri bin Haji Mohammad Yusof witnessed the signing.
The event continued with the launch of SMOC, which can be downloaded from Google PlayStore and Apple AppStore.
Acting Deputy Permanent Secretary (Transport) at the MTIC Haji Mohammad Salihin bin Haji Aspar offered a backdrop of the national public bus service, which has enjoyed a long history since its introduction in 1968. He also touched on Awang Damit Company’s involvement in running the service between Bandar Brunei and Berakas Camp via Jalan Pasir Berakas.
He said, “This was then followed by several buses that began operating for the Muara and Gadong routes in the 70s.
“Today, 11 companies are involved in public bus service activities in the country, with five companies operating for the Brunei-Muara District, one for the Belait District and five that service the Seria to Bandar Seri Begawan route.”
He acknowledged the need to iron out the challenges faced by the public bus transport system. They include the lack/absence of public bus service information such as schedules, route information and frequency; reliability, frequency and comfort level issues; and the unsatisfactory conditions of the bus stops.
“Alhamdulillah, through government efforts to improve the public bus transportation system the pilot project is being implemented,” Haji Mohammad Salihin said.
Zenmov Inc President and Chief Information Officer Sumio Tanaka also discussed the project.