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Gadgets & Home Improvement

SG NextBus app developer wins LTA award

Developer Muh Hon Cheng, whose transport apps have been downloaded more than one million times, took home The Young Innovator (Individual) Award
The Straits Times - April 4, 2012
By: Trevor Tan
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SG NextBus app developer wins LTA award A screenshot of the SG NextBus app.

If you have benefited from using mobile apps such as SG NextBus or SG ERP, thank Mr Muh Hon Cheng.

Mr Muh, 31, took home The Young Innovator (Individual) Award last night at a ceremony organised by the Land Transport Authority (LTA) at Swissotel The Stamford. It is the first time the award is being presented to an individual.

Previously, The Young Innovator Award was only for organisations.

The Land Transport Excellence Awards, launched in 2008, are held every two years. They recognise industry partners and individuals who have made significant contributions to land transport here.

Mr Muh has developed four local public transport-related mobile apps since 2008 for the iOS, Android and Windows Phone 7 platforms.

The first app he developed was SG Buses, which is a bus guide using timings provided by bus companies.

He was pleasantly surprised by the award. He said: 'I put in a lot of effort to improve the apps, so winning it is like a formal recognition.'

He added: 'Transport is a big thing in Singapore and it makes sense to create transport mobile apps, as your phone is with you all the time.'

More than a million of his apps have been downloaded across all mobile platforms.

Mr Muh is a co-founder of local mobile developer company, Buuuk. The transport apps, however, are something he does in his free time.

'It is mainly for self-satisfaction and experimentation,' he explained.

The Young Innovator (Enterprise) Award went to WeesWares, a four-man firm set up two years ago.

It has built apps for Changi Airport, Gap and other clients.

It uses traffic data from the LTA to develop free transport mobile apps for public use.

WeesWares has more than three million downloads for its apps.

Its founder, Mr Joseph Wee, has been developing iOS apps since 2008. He released Trafficam SG in November 2008.

He said: 'To receive such great recognition from the LTA is amazing and humbling at the same time.'

Transport apps by Mr Muh Hon Cheng

SG NextBus

Free; iOS

This is the app many commuters have on their iPhones and iPads. It estimates the arrival times of all SBS and SMRT buses. These help you figure out how much time you have to Draw Something before your bus arrives. The app also points you to the bus stops that are nearest to where you are.

SG Buses

Free; iOS, Android, Windows Phone 7

Unlike SG NextBus, this app is a bus guide that offers information on bus routes and schedules. So, if you want to know where a particular bus will take you, key in its number and the app will give you a stop-by-stop breakdown of its route.

SG Trains

US$1.99 (S$2.50); iOS

Confused by Singapore's MRT system? This app offers estimated train arrival times, the timings of the first and last trains and an estimate of travelling times between stations. It also tells you which MRT station is closest to your current location. 

Transport apps by WeesWares

Trafficam SG

Free; iOS, Android and Meego

Want to check what the traffic looks like at common choke points? This app draws images from 46 LTA webcams that stare down on major expressways and main roads. These shots are updated every five to 10 minutes. So you can plan your route - or have another cuppa - before you set out on the CTE.

 Carpark@SG

 Free; iOS

As the name suggests, this app tells you the parking rates of carparks around the island. It even has space availability information for some carparks. You can help keep the app up-to-date by submitting carpark info.

Traffic@SG

Free; iOS

Anyone who drives in Singapore should have this app because it delivers real-time traffic updates on accidents, congestion, vehicle breakdowns and roadworks. You set it to notify you of traffic conditions at specified timings. With that information, you can adjust your route when you are about to leave for your destination.

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