'Citymapper' and 'Transit App' Offer In-Depth Looks at Transit Experiences on Apple Watch

As a few popular iPhone apps begin rolling out updates for their built-in Apple Watch apps ahead of the April 24 launch, a pair of transit-focused services have posted on Medium to share detailed looks into exactly what kind of experience users can expect from Citymapper and Transit App on the Apple Watch next month.

Sifting through the data gathered from its iPhone app, Citymapper learned that its users frequently turned their phone on and off throughout one trip, unlocking to reorient themselves and quickly locking the device again to save battery. That's where its upcoming Apple Watch app comes in, Citymapper promising an experience tailor-made for the wrist-worn device.

Citymapper apple watch

This is the nature of transit information when you move across the city. You need snippets of information. Different things at different times, depending on where you are along the way.

Transit info works well on a device that focuses attention on one thing at a time. And where the transaction cost (ie hassle) of getting additional information is low (raise your wrist and swipe). Using a wearable app may also be safer. City dwellers are generally walking too fast, crossing streets, using stairs, jostling through crowds.

Citymapper has a few cool things planned for its Watch app, with Glances showcasing "how messed up your city is", pointing out stalled bus and train schedules around a user's location. The app will even notify a user, with the much-touted wrist-tap feature, when to get off of a current bus or train route to continue along their way.

Citymapper on the Apple Watch will be available in every city Citymapper has already established itself, including places like New York City and Rome, and support English, French, Spanish, German, Italian, Japanese, with more cities and languages "coming soon."

Transit's Apple Watch app appears to be providing less of a notification-heavy experience and more of a straight-forward curated list of departure times and easy-to-follow directions, with a static "Take Me Home" button always on hand for when users get lost. The company aims to shave off as many precious seconds as possible with its wrist-worn experience.

transit apple watch

It’s not every day that developers get the chance to build something for a completely new platform. And we think that the Apple Watch might just be the ideal platform for us. Sure, it’s not so difficult to pull your phone out of your pocket. But it’s while we’re in transit that those seconds matter most.

With Transit App for Apple Watch, all of that friction is gone. No matter where you are, you will have instant access to departure times for nearby routes — on hand at all times. Sprinting for the bus? Need to know which route is leaving soonest? Don’t want to interrupt your game of Candy Crush? We’ve got your back.

Both Citymapper [Direct Link] and Transit App [Direct Link] promise to be available on day one of the Apple Watch's April 24 launch.

Related Roundup: Apple Watch Series 6
Buyer's Guide: Apple Watch (Caution)
Related Forum: Apple Watch

Top Rated Comments

newagemac Avatar
83 months ago
As more and more developers start developing better experiences adapted to the unique experience of the watch, the naysayers are going to look sillier and sillier.

Apple's real secret to success is they create awesome platforms that make developers lives easier (with well thought out and advanced APIs) and rewarding (with financially sustainable systems).

Their haters and competitors still don't seem to have figured this out yet.

Also, most people aren't developers and they don't understand that the hardest work goes into developing platforms and systems. Those well thought out APIs are the reason developers are able to create such great apps with ease. But if you aren't a developer, you have no clue what's going on behind the scenes.

The difference between the Apple Watch APIs and the Android Wear APIs are so big it seems like Google just rushed something out the door to compete with the Apple rumors. You can tell Apple put a lot of thought into everything and spent a long time developing this.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
garylapointe Avatar
83 months ago
Sounds like a must have if you live in a city with public transit.

I'm in Detroit and it's got pretty limited transit compared to other cities that I've been in.

Gary
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
darkslide29 Avatar
83 months ago
The problem I have with these types of apps is that GPS location is not very accurate underground or when surrounded by very tall buildings. Often the Transit App things I am at one of the adjacent stops, or on a different line that happens to run nearby. It is also problematic in high-traffic areas such as central subway hubs where many lines and bus routes intersect. The list of "nearby" stops is often very long on my iphone in these areas, where I have to scroll to find the route and direction I actually want to go in.

I don't think the Apple Watch will address the first issue, and it will make the second issue much worse.

I actually think transit apps need bigger screens, not smaller, and most importantly more accurate and quicker positioning systems.
We need Apple to give away iBeacons to subway stations, at least in a few major cities.

I don't really know if this would fix the GPS issue, but it would be an easy way for Apple to give publicity to its iBeacon and show off its potential uses outside of department stores/sports stadiums.

I'm assuming Google (or Samsung themselves) have an iBeacon alternative, but why not beat them to the punch in big cities for commuters? Might be that extra cool thing to sway someone to Apple.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
andreiru Avatar
83 months ago
Apple watch may work well with turn-by turn pedestrian directions.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
rrahimi Avatar
83 months ago
This is the first (and so far only) category of app that might push me to buy an Apple Watch. Not having to pull out the phone to go around would be quite the convenience.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
newagemac Avatar
83 months ago
Have you actually seen worked directly with the Android Wear API's or are you just saying that based on a few website watch app pictures?

I'm a developer. I've seen both the Apple and Google Wear APIs. And yes the Apple Watch APIs seem far more advanced than what Google has put out there. And Apple hasn't even allowed us to create apps directly on the Watch yet.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

REC ASA CODE2016 20160601 205816 2745

Elon Musk Reportedly Demanded to Become Apple CEO as Part of Potential Tesla Acquisition [Update: Musk Denies]

Friday July 30, 2021 9:04 am PDT by
Tesla CEO Elon Musk reportedly once demanded that he be made Apple CEO in a brief discussion of a potential acquisition with Apple's current CEO, Tim Cook. The claim comes in a new book titled "Power Play: Tesla, Elon Musk and the Bet of the Century," as reviewed by The Los Angeles Times. According to the book, during a 2016 phone call between Musk and Cook that touched on the possibility of ...
General Apps Messages

Android iMessage Competitor Puts Pressure on Apple

Friday July 30, 2021 3:15 am PDT by
Google and the three major U.S. carriers, including Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile, will all support a new communications protocol on Android smartphones starting in 2022, a move that puts pressure on Apple to adopt a new cross-platform messaging standard and may present a challenge to iMessage. Verizon recently announced that it is planning to adopt Messages by Google as its default messaging...
iPhone 13 Always On Feature

iPhone 13 to Bring Over a Major Feature From the Apple Watch

Wednesday July 28, 2021 2:21 am PDT by
Apple's upcoming iPhone 13 lineup will feature an always-on display akin to the Apple Watch Series 5 and Series 6, according to recent reports. In his weekly Power On newsletter, Bloomberg journalist Mark Gurman, who often reveals accurate insights into Apple's plans, said that the iPhone 13 may feature an Apple Watch-inspired always-on mode. The Apple Watch Series 5 and Apple Watch...
duracell battery bitter coating

Apple Says Don't Buy AirTag Replacement Batteries With Bitter Coating

Wednesday July 28, 2021 11:08 am PDT by
Since AirTags were just released earlier this year and are expected to have a year-long battery life, it may be some time yet before AirTag users need a replacement battery, but when the time comes for a refresh, Apple is warning customers not to buy batteries with a bitter coating. AirTags use coin-shaped CR2032 batteries, which happen to be a size that's easy to swallow. Some battery...
a15 chip

iPhone 13 and Redesigned MacBook Pro Chip Production Hit With Gas Contamination

Friday July 30, 2021 5:44 am PDT by
The most important TSMC factory that manufactures Apple's chips destined for next-generation iPhone and Mac models has been hit by a gas contamination, according to Nikkei Asia. The factory, known as "Fab 18," is TSMC's most advanced chipmaking facility. TSMC is Apple's sole chip supplier, making all of the processors used in every Apple device with a custom silicon chip. Industry...
apple rtp land

Apple Preparing to Occupy 200,000 Square Feet of Temporary Space Ahead of New $1 Billion North Carolina Campus

Thursday July 29, 2021 9:14 am PDT by
Back in April, Apple announced a $430 billion investment over the next five years to create more than 20,000 new jobs as the company continues to expand. One significant piece of that plan is a new engineering and research center in North Carolina where Apple will be investing over $1 billion and hiring at least 3,000 employees. Assemblage of seven properties in Research Triangle Park owned by ...
Apple Leak Feature

Apple Demands Leaker Reveals Sources Under Threat of Being Reported to Police

Wednesday July 28, 2021 6:53 am PDT by
Apple has sent a cease and desist letter to a leaker based in China as part of its continuing attempts to curtail leaks of unreleased products, according to Vice. A Chinese citizen who shared images of stolen Apple prototypes on social media was sent a warning letter from Fangda Partners, Apple's law firm in China, on June 18, 2021. An extract from the letter read:You have disclosed without ...
macos monterey tidbits feature copy

Apple Releases New macOS 12 Monterey Public Beta

Wednesday July 28, 2021 10:19 am PDT by
Apple today seeded the third public beta of the macOS 12 Monterey beta to public beta testers, allowing non-developers to test the new macOS Monterey software ahead of its public release. The third beta comes two weeks after Apple released the second macOS Monterey public beta. Public beta testers can download the macOS 12 Monterey update from the Software Update section of the System...
iOS 15 General Feature Purple

Apple Releases New Public Betas of iOS 15, iPadOS 15, watchOS 8, and tvOS 15

Wednesday July 28, 2021 10:16 am PDT by
Apple today seeded the third betas of iOS and iPadOS 15 to public beta testers, allowing non-developers to download and test the new updates ahead of their fall release. The third public betas come two weeks after Apple released the second public betas. Public beta testers who have signed up for Apple's beta testing program can download the iOS and iPadOS 15 updates over the air after...
nothing ear 1 buds 1

Nothing 'Ear (1)' True Wireless Earbuds Launch to Take on AirPods Pro With ANC and Unusual Design for $99

Tuesday July 27, 2021 7:57 am PDT by
Nothing, a new brand from OnePlus founder Carl Pei, has today officially launched the "Ear (1)" true wireless earbuds after months of anticipation around the company's AirPods Pro rival. The Ear (1) features an in-ear design, Active Noise Cancelation, Bluetooth 5.2, IPX4 water resistance, and a charging case with Qi-compatible wireless charging and a USB-C port. Fast pairing is supported on...