Case Study: The Digital Showcase: a new information experience in the station
The business objective of DB Station&Service is the operation and maintenance of stations and stops. The company manages around 5,400 transport stations in Germany. It is a subsidiary of Deutsche Bahn and as such constitutes the Passenger Stations business segment within the department of Infrastructure and Services.
In the DB Information 4.0 project, Basilicom has created a modern service universe that offers travellers the best possible information in the station. The accompanying development of a prototype digital showcase is also intended to initiate the replacement of the analogue information showcases.
Customer Key Facts
Analogue information requires high manual efforts
Up to now, analog showcase boxes have been in use everywhere in the approximately 5,400 railway stations in Germany to provide passengers with important information. The employees of DB Station&Service AG regularly fill these manually with printed notices such as carriage status indicators, construction site information, or arrival and departure times. This consumes a lot of time and personnel resources and is also prone to errors, especially when it comes to timeliness: especially with time-critical, up-to-the-minute information, it takes a long time and a lot of effort to first print the posters and then place them in the display cases all over the station. And finally, there is a space problem: the limited display case space also limits the amount of information that can be provided on the information posters. A digital showcase was needed.
From the idea to the prototype in an agile approach
Together with DB Station&Service AG, Basilicom took on the development of the technology, the IT interaction concept, the implementation of the UX design and the realisation of the prototype in an agile approach. In the pilot project, an interactive touch screen was developed with an initial prototype of 12 applications. It was designed in such a way that travellers can intuitively navigate through the information offered and use current travel information, delays, construction site information, fare overviews or local maps of the surroundings and much more. By aggregating the data from different railway systems into a central master data management system, we enabled numerous new information offerings that can be derived from the database. In addition, we equipped the system with a central control of use-case-related information that can be played out across channels at different touchpoints via an employee dashboard.
Aggregation and centralisation of real-time data enables efficient distribution
While the previous information posters only provided limited information, the digital showcase includes twelve information applications. In addition to current arrival and departure times, the new interactive system provides, for example, information on carriage order, with details of equipment and boarding point, current construction site information or service numbers. Through the aggregation of real-time data, travellers only receive up-to-date information tailored to their needs. The distribution of data has also become easy and efficient, as we have linked the display cases to the railway system. With the digital showcase, we have created an additional information and communication channel, which will offer Deutsche Bahn further application possibilities and numerous omni-channel content playouts in the future. The showcases have been in use at the three pilot locations Augsburg, Wolfsburg and Münster since June 2017.