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NYC Subways to Get More Touchscreen Travel Kiosks

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- In a continued effort to improve public transportation through technology, the New York City Metropolitan Transportation Authority has announced plans to roll out at least 77 new On the Go! touchscreen travel kiosks in stations throughout the city.

Like the kiosks already installed at Grand Central Terminal, Penn Station and the Bowling Green station in Manhattan, the Atlantic Avenue-Barclays Center in Brooklyn and at the Jackson Heights-Roosevelt Avenue station in Queens, the new On the Go! Travel Stations will offer real-time service status, escalator and elevator status, and transportation directions and maps.

A spokesperson for Control Group Inc., one of the two companies contracted to produce the new kiosks, told ABC News that the idea behind implementing these On the Go! units in more New York City transit stations is about "bringing the innovations of the web and mobile to 100-year-old infrastructure."

The On the Go! software will be able to support MTA-sponsored third-party apps.

Control Group, tasked with producing "anywhere from 47 to 90" kiosks for the city, according to the MTA, is no stranger to public software design and development projects. Some of its most recent work has been with the Brooklyn Tech Triangle, the Delta terminal at LaGuardia Airport and the New York City Reinvent Payphones competition. CBS Outdoor is also under contract to produce 30 On the Go! Travel Stations for the city.

The MTA's original launch of On the Go! was a collaboration with Cisco. "With On the Go, we are adding yet another layer of state-of-the-art customer communications into our subway system, but it goes far beyond the already helpful information provided by our countdown clocks and the displays in our new technology subway cars," MTA NYC Transit President Thomas F. Prendergast said two years ago in a statement.

A spokesperson for the MTA told ABC News that the dates for installing these new On the Go! units are not yet certain, but that the kiosks would be placed in 16 different stations.

The city also began setting up high-tech telephone booths around its five boroughs last year. The booths, or "SmartScreen" stations, which are made in partnership with Cicso and LG, include 32-inch multi-touch displays with apps that let you search for local restaurants and other information.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

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