Singapore’s GovTech Agency has partnered with taxi app Grab to expand its trial of on-demand public transport.

The new GrabShuttle service launched yesterday allows commuters to pre-book seats on buses via an app. It is an extension of the GovTech and Land Transport Authority’s Beeline scheme launched last year.

Routes are determined using crowdsourced requests and anonymised public transport data from Beeline, allowing new routes and prices to be launched with changes in demand. The data is analysed to identify a need for more direct bus routes where people are currently making multiple changes during their commute.

GovTech is looking for more partnerships with startups and other private sector players. Beeline is built on an open API architecture, which means that businesses can “easily integrate their services with Beeline’s open mobility marketplace”, said Liu Feng Yuan, Director of the Data Science Division in GovTech’s Government Digital Services unit.

Along with a better understanding of commuter demands, transport operators will also get access to analytics tools for better fleet management and operations, he added.

GrabShuttle has launched with 15 routes for the morning and evening peak hours, and plans to add more over the next few months. Payments for seats can be made via the app and buses can be tracked in real-time. The app also takes in suggests for new routes. Fares currently range from $3.5 to $5.

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