Droid users getting in on the MBTA’s See/Say app action

The app allowed riders to be on alert last month after a 10-year-old girl went missing.

The MBTA’s See Something, Say Something smartphone app has gotten 2,500 downloads from iPhone users since May.

On Monday, the agency opened the door up to Android users, and according to T officials, the response has been “pretty impressive.”

“We’ve worked closely with transit police to put it out for the Android -  about half of our customers are using the Android – so we’re really excited to get it out there. We’re already seeing a lot of downloads,” said MBTA Director of Innovation Joshua Robin.

The smartphone app, which is available for download here, and on the MBTA website, allows riders to discretely send information about a suspicious or dangerous situation, along with a photo, to transit police.

“Discretion a huge advantage for us,” Robin said. “Something could be happening that’s suspicious, and a rider could pull out their phone and use the app, and nobody knows what they’re doing. They don’t have to make a call.”

A few weeks ago, a ten-year-old girl went missing. Transit police were notified of the situation via the app, Robin said, and therefore were able to send out alerts to app users.

“A common way it helps us is to get alerts out,” Robin said.

From the App home screen, riders have two options to contact T police:

  • The “Report a Problem” button allows riders to send text or photos directly to transit police. To make it more discreet, the camera flash is automatically disabled when photos are taken through the app. When reporting an issue, riders can select station locations and report categories to assist transit police.
  • The “Call Transit Police” button will connect customers directly to transit police if they wish to speak to them directly.

Obviously T riders are often underground while in the transit system, so if there is no cell service, the app stores messages and sends them when connectivity returns.

App users can also get service delay alerts.

Robin said he expects a solid turnout of downloads for Droid users.

“We’re getting it out there to a decent number of riders. We are definitely pleased so far with the amount of downloads.”



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