Chris Bishop

Sales Director APAC and Marketing Director, Ipsotek, an Atos company

Making every journey count with real-time data

Across the transport sector, opportunities created by the availability of 5G are wide-ranging, from responding to safety incidents in real-time to ensuring a smooth and enjoyable experience for passengers.

5G brings huge potential for travel and other service providers at railways stations and other transport hubs, as well as across transport infrastructures and the world’s growing freight industry. With more bandwidth to transmit data, solar-powered cameras can be easily installed, supporting carbon-neutral initiatives. When combined with AI, CCTV footage provides a wealth of new insight to help make transport safe, secure, reliable, and efficient.

As well as alerting staff and triggering automated responses to incidents, benefits include higher revenues, with intelligence gathered over time that can be visualized via dashboards for transport operators to use as inputs into planning and managing transport networks.

Transforming passengers’ experience

5G is an enabler of ubiquitous AI-driven video analytics, as it makes the deployment of CCTV cameras much easier.

Gathering intelligence from computer-processed video streams to better understand passenger flow at a transport hub enables operators and retailers to provide a frictionless customer experience. What’s more, the less time passengers spend queuing or waiting around, the more time they have for shopping and entertainment, in-person and personalized via passenger apps as part of an integrated end-to-end journey.

Queue and crowd management

With pressure on operators to comply with new safety protocols, the effective management of queues and crowds is more important than ever. Using real-time video and AI analytics, operators can analyze the formation of queues in real-time and swiftly open additional lanes or redirect passengers between checkpoints.

Detection of suspicious behavior

Abandoned luggage, passengers, loitering in critical areas, or moving against general direction can be easily detected, and alerts can be raised. Such detection can be life-saving in some cases, like rail passengers stepping on tracks or entering subway tunnels.

Passenger security

Security checks and controls using mobile devices and facial recognition technologies will further contribute to passenger security, e.g. by detecting individuals on a security watchlist. Interception personnel can be provided with an advanced video feed of the scenery to facilitate a polite and effective response.

Contactless travel

Contactless travel can be expanded using 5G for faster, easier, more convenient travel. In the future, all a passenger might need to do is scan their smartphone at the car park to gain access and find their allocated parking space; then, they could use the same device using their biometric ID to go through security. Looking further ahead, we’ll see more use of autonomous vehicles at travel hubs, enabled by 5G, for passenger services such as luggage handling, entertainment, and hospitality.

Intelligent operations and asset management

Any incident or risk has the potential to seriously disrupt and delay travel services – which is why effective detection and incident response makes such a huge difference to any travel operator. Monitoring can put a huge strain on human resources – which is where 5G will help.

Cargo handling at ports and rail stations

Cargo handling at ports and rail stations can be better handled using a handheld or automated distance readers for scanning, with all data sent via 5G to a central location and accessible by service providers and logistics partners.

Monitoring service areas

From chains of petrol-filling stations to retail spaces and travel hubs, video combined with AI at the edge will help identify and manage hazards and incidents such as theft or fire – with fewer control room resources. Congestion and potential traffic violations can be avoided in roadways and car parks, improving operations and avoiding lost revenue. License plate recognition enabled by 5G will complement security controls and revenue protection.

Monitoring rail infrastructure and tracks

Using cameras and intelligent video analytics will majorly contribute to health and safety and real-time incident response. Level crossings are a great example: gaining early warning of a person or vehicle on the track will minimize disruption, and data from level crossings over time can be analyzed as part of infrastructure planning and management.

Creating intelligent supply chains

Connecting and gathering data from sensors fixed at ports and freight containers and vessels more easily will increase the speed and efficiency of unloading and loading, with huge benefits, particularly in bad weather or remote locations.

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