Personal and Ubiquitous Computing

, Volume 17, Issue 8, pp 1807–1816

Towards proximity-based passenger sensing on public transport buses

  • Vassilis Kostakos
  • Tiago Camacho
  • Claudio Mantero
Original Article

DOI: 10.1007/s00779-013-0652-4

Cite this article as:
Kostakos, V., Camacho, T. & Mantero, C. Pers Ubiquit Comput (2013) 17: 1807. doi:10.1007/s00779-013-0652-4


While substantial research on intelligent transportation systems has focused on the development of novel wireless communication technologies and protocols, relatively little work has sought to fully exploit proximity-based wireless technologies that passengers actually carry with them today. This paper presents the real-world deployment of a system that exploits public transit bus passengers’ Bluetooth-capable devices to capture and reconstruct micro- and macro-passenger behavior. We present supporting evidence that approximately 12 % of passengers already carry Bluetooth-enabled devices and that the data collected on these passengers captures with almost 80 % accuracy the daily fluctuation of actual passengers flows. The paper makes three contributions in terms of understanding passenger behavior: We verify that the length of passenger trips is exponentially bounded, the frequency of passenger trips follows a power law distribution, and the microstructure of the network of passenger movements is polycentric.


Public transport Passenger sensing Bluetooth Origin/destination matrix Mobile and ubiquitous computing 

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Vassilis Kostakos
    • 1
  • Tiago Camacho
    • 2
  • Claudio Mantero
    • 3
  1. 1.University of OuluOuluFinland
  2. 2.Queensland University of TechnologyBrisbaneAustralia
  3. 3.Horários do Funchal, Transportes Públicos S.AFunchalPortugal

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