As I reflect on ITS Helsinki, the Google Glass seemed to be a real hit. CGI has had a few pairs for a couple months allowing some of our developers to explore and innovate with them. They were a real hit on our stand at Intertraffic back in March and again at ITS Helsinki with many selfies being taken….

I've read reports of Google Glass owners being asked to remove them in certain situations but also of them being used to enhance passenger experience (Mercedes-Benz), especially in aviation (Virgin Altantic). But what about the uses in other transport sectors as this technology becomes mainstream.....


Automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) is something we’ve already implemented on Google Glass allowing the user to scan a car’s number plate and then find information via a look up to the licensing agency.

CGI have been involved in augmented reality for over 5 years and has developed a range of solutions for our clients. One of these which could transfer to google Glass includes asset engineers who can walk into a plant room and immediately see data overlaying the real world image and how each piece of plant is performing, where deviation from the norm is occurring, or long term trends indicating a wider issue. This can easily be achieved using standard mobility solutions but what about when those assets are ducts, cables or fibre underground? The ability to overlay a digital world onto the real one really finds benefit here. Or for maintenance workers, rather than having manual (electronic or paper), how about having the procedures displayed over the asset enabling the taking of photographic proof of work done as simple as “OK Glass, take picture”. 

Passenger Interactions

Allowing greater interactions with a customer with information at the flick of an eye such as platform departure information or local information for staff at transport hubs to information about that passenger (but somehow allowing for an opt-in rather than big brother). But currently this isn’t for passenger recognition as the Google Glass developer guidelines states “Don't use the camera or microphone to cross-reference and immediately present personal information identifying anyone other than the user, including use cases such as facial recognition and voice print.”


Wayfinding is already part of the Google Glass experience; but making a greater level of information available to the passenger from travel disruption alerts, where’s my nearest bus, what platform does my train depart from, where should I stand for the best chance of getting a seat on the train, use social media to inform me about the people around me, why’s there a traffic queue are just the start? Looking at one of the Glass app directories 12 transportation apps are listed, from ParkingGlass (find the nearest parking space), Live Traffic Cams, Speedometer and public transit arrival time.

We are only just starting to scratch the surface – and it will be interesting explore further applications for freight & logistics users too…

About this author

Picture of Theo Quick

Theo Quick

Director, transport, CGI in the UK

With wide-ranging experience of the transport industry across Europe and the U. S. , Theo currently leads CGI’s transport business in the UK. He sits on the UK’s Automotive Council Technology Group and the Intelligent Transport Systems World Congress and has been director of ITS ...


Google Glass is a real hit as a personal navigation system. It is so convenient to "wear" it and the position above your eye is perfect for a undisturbed solution. I love my pair and still use it frequently!

Submitted by Sascha Boerger on December 5, 2016

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