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Real-time prediction of waiting times in queues and crowd movement analysis software

Country of Origin: Austria
Reference Number: TOAT20160801001
Publication Date: 1 August 2016

Summary

An Austrian start-up has developed a software solution to predict the waiting time of queues in ski resorts, theme parks, airports, and stadiums. Information can be used to inform and guide customers for a more efficient distribution. The software is already on the market. Partners are sought to implement the solution and to use the information for information displays systems and queue management solutions in the frame of a license agreement or commercial agreement with technical assistance.

Description

An Austrian IT start-up has developed a software solutions to predict the waiting time of queues. The solutions helps customers avoid queues and delivers real time insights in crowd movement to optimize queue management. The solution is already on the market and applied in several ski resorts, theme parks, airports, stadiums.

The core innovation is an algorithm that uses video signal from any type of source or camera to identify individuals and track their movement. Using the speed at which the individuals move forward, the approximate waiting time is calculated in real-time. This information can now be used to gain insights in crowd movement or to inform customers about the waiting time and alternative counters.
Already existing surveillance cameras can be used for gaining the required video material. The camera must cover the potential waiting area from above to ensure proper tracking. Multiple cameras can be seamlessly combined to capture a larger area and various types of video information or camera can be used. (e.g. thermal imaging videos, infrared)

Operators benefit from the integrated counting service combined with information about waiting and processing time for each person in line. Measures can be taken by providing alternatives or improving processing time per customer. In addition the operator receives valuable information about crowd distribution (as "heat map") to place information displays, advertisement, shops, etc.
Several operators of skiing lifts in Austria, Germany, Italy and Slovakia have already applied the technology to provide a guiding system for their customers. An information display (see picture 1) installed at the ski-slopes directs skiers to routes with less traffic and hence increases customer satisfaction and improves percentage utilisation of lifts.
Theme parks in France already use the solution to provide real-time information about waiting times for rollercoasters. The crowd management system keeps operators informed about most frequented places by customers. Heat maps will provide the operators with the necessary information to better locate advertisements and to better plan unpredictable emergencies. In addition to stationary information signs, relevant information can be provided via mobile apps as well (see picture 2).

The company is looking for partners to implement the solution into their product or technology and therefore provide an added value to their customers. Potential partners could be companies providing queue management systems, distributors of infoscreens and display information systems as well as providers of similar and complementary services for skiing resorts, theme parks, airports and stadiums.
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Advantages and Innovations

Advantages for operators (ski resorts, theme parks, airports, stadiums, shops ...)
+ cost-effective as existing infrastructure (cameras) can be used
+ enhanced percentage utilisation of counter/ski lift/rollercoaster
+ increased customer satisfaction
+ real-time information about processing speed / waiting time
+ analysis of crowd movement
+ counting of passengers in specific areas

Stage Of Development

Already on the market

Requested partner

Potential partners are
o providers of surveillance cameras and systems
Install the software in surveillance systems to offer crowd movement analysis as added value to clients.
o providers of queue management systems
Implement the algorithm in solutions to add waiting time information as service.
o distributors of infoscreens and display information systems
Develop information displays that makes use of the waiting time information.
o content providers for infoscreens
Use the waiting time information to create new content like graphics, videos, or games

The Austrian company provides training on how to set up the cameras and the software to make best use of the technology.

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