Let's talk for a minute about the power of mobile apps.  Ever hit a pothole and then call the authorities to come fix it? Probably not. Ever hit a pothole and want to call the authorities to come fix it? Probably. Imagine a world where your smart phone could record every pothole you hit while you're driving and automatically alert authorities to come fix it. Sounds like another great idea, but not a reality.

Well…actually, Boston is already doing this thanks to a mobile app called Street Bump. The mobile app uses an accelerometer and GPS data from mobile phones owned by volunteers to spot wherever a bump occurs in the course of a vehicle trip. If a bump gets recorded several times in the same place by different mobile phones, a road crew is sent to fix it.

The Power of Mobile Apps


Reaching The Citizens You Serve

“Street Bump is a crowd-sourcing project that helps residents improve their neighborhood streets. Volunteers use the Street Bump mobile app to collect road condition data while they drive. The data provides governments with the real-time information to fix problems and plan long term investments” – StreetBump.org

Mobile Apps for the Public Sector

This is just one of a host of new public sector-related apps being developed to improve and streamline the lives of citizens. Apps are growing in popularity because the mobile phone offers a couple of advantages that no other communications channel can compete with, says Ian Finley, managing vice president at Gartner.

“If you think about reaching the citizens that you serve, you basically can reach almost all of them through a mobile app,” he says. “You couldn't reach them through a PC or even a web-based solution because not everybody went on the web.”

Finley estimates that delivering services via mobile can allow public sector bodies to reach more than 90 percent of their citizens, compared to around 30 – 40 percent for web-based applications. Mobile apps also allow citizen services to be delivered almost anywhere, anytime, rather than when a user is seated at a computer – or rather when a driver remembers the pothole he hit on the way to work and submits a complaint.

Here is a list of additional apps aimed at improving the public sector:

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
Apps for the New York City Subway

Read the full article (thenetworkcisco)

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