East Transit provides software for university and campus-based transportation systems. Its signature SmartRide Dispatch system was created specifically for campus escort (on call) shuttle operations. By combining the findings of extensive user research with software solutions based on recent advances in cost-efficient technologies, SmartRide Dispatch is able to help dispatchers, drivers, and transportation managers run their service more effectively, producing a safer passenger experience. A related product for fixed-route shuttle and bus systems called SafeRide Tracker is currently under development and due for release by the end of 2004. East Transit plans to apply its technology and expertise to other markets beginning in 2005.

The SmartRide Dispatch software and the package surrounding that product were created specifically for the university customer. The software architecture was designed not only to balance the disparate needs of dispatchers, drivers, transportation managers, and passengers, but also to be highly customizable to different university policies, preferences, and locations. Because the entire solution runs on an internet application server and internet-ready cellular phones, East Transit is able to offer an extremely cost-effective and easy-to-manage solution that requires minimal investment in equipment from clients. SmartRide is sold as a software service with a monthly subscription rate that includes secure access to the software, cell phone service, live technical support at night, software upgrades, data backup, and server maintenance.

SmartRide was initiated as a project in the Computer Science Department at Brown University, where it was first deployed in Spring, 2004. The initial project team included nineteen undergraduate and graduate students with a wide array of technology experience and computer science expertise. East Transit's four founders were all heavily involved in the initial project, from which they gained a keen understanding of university transportation system needs. East Transit is based in Providence, RI.


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