Boston Commuter Rail Workers Using Smart Eyewear Technology
Commuter rail is a new industry to also be taking advantage of Augmented Reality. The Keolis Commuter Services (KCS) will provide the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) workers with smart glasses in order to aid communications, increase repair speed, and lower disruptions, according to an article on TechnologyReview.com. The start-up company was incorporated in January, and the new technology is set to be released in September 2016.
The software that will be used is called AMA XpertEye, which buys the smart glasses from companies such as Epson and Google, and adds its own operating system onto them. This allows the wearer to hold conversations and video chats from the field with colleagues situated in other locations, for example an office.
• Image annotations can be made
• Screenshots of the video can be taken
• The video can be saved for future replay
• Encrypted connection that can use 3G, 4G, Wi-Fi, or Ethernet cable
• Enhances people’s vision via image processing
• Useful for companies in maintenance, monitoring, and training
Benefits to the company of the technology:
• Will help keep more trains in service
• Will save mechanics a 30 minute walk
• KCS would not have to transport trains to the main facility if damage occurred
• Workers could easily fix a problem if they can consult experts (efficient communication)
• Workers will learn more through a visual experience—ease of use and training
• Drivers may be able to make emergency repairs
In addition, there are other uses for AMA XpertEyes’ technology; car manufacturers can oversee auto repairs, security guards and factory managers can survey buildings, and insurance companies can observe property damage. Ultimately, ease of use for existing employees will be the most important factor in the investment decision-making process.