TrainTimes Morocco v1.1 is here

Posted: December 9, 2011 in Release

Dear All

Here’s the awaited version with new features, a new UI Design and better user experience. Actually not all the features that i had planned to factor in this release are there. Some of them are going to have to wait for a couple of weeks before they can see the light. I’m not going to tell you what they are I’ll leave it all for you to discover soon.

So What’s new in this release?

Firstly, i’ve added search to both views to make it even faster to choose your destination. The search has helped improve the user experience tremendously and it’s a lot easier to choose stations. Also you get the best of both worlds you can either use the Journey Planner if you’re out and about or in a rush to catch the next train. On the other hand the map is now easier to use for people who would like to know exactly where they’re going and how they can get there.

We’ve included an iAd on this release. So for those of you who are in iAd enabled countries this is the best way to show how much you love the App. We need to keep this thing going and we can’t do it without your help. You like free apps, i like free apps. So let’s keep it that way ;P

The App is still fast. We’re still working on improving the search and make it faster. It’s bug free as usual and doesn’t crash. If it ever does please report it to us.

I just want to point out that the purpose of the app is to offer an experience and not just train timetables. We don’t want to make this just another train time app, but a reference in train travel.

We have some amazing ideas we want to include on the App and make it even more amazing. So if you have any comments feel free to share them and let us know you can reach us using your favourite Social Network or here by leaving a comment.

I hope you all like this new release and enjoy the app.

App Development Team

 

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Hello Everyone

The App has had a large success throughout the whole world. We are very happy with the results and the success it had amongst travelers who visited Morocco and commuters.

BUT IT DOESN’T STOP THERE.

We want to make the App even more useful to you and we want to make it to suit your needs. We have some new ideas we want to put to work for the TrainTimes Morocco App and we want your input on this question. So please feel free to leave your suggestions on the comment section.

Thank you All for the Support

TrainTimes v1.0.1 is out

Posted: October 20, 2011 in Articles

Dear All

You can now get the latest version of the App with support for iOS 5.0. The App is much lighter than the previous version and faster.
I’m glad that there are many people who like the App. There’s more to come for the next coming months. So keep an eye on this blog and you can also follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

Cya

iOS 5.0 Compatibility on the way

Posted: October 13, 2011 in Release

Dear All

If you have recently updated your iOS on your device you may experience some problems with the Map feature of the App and some slowness in searching for timetables. This is due to the fact that the App is not currently supported for iOS 5.0. The reason for that is because we are trying to work on covering a wider range of iOS 4 versions for people with early Jailbroken phones and tomorrow this should be sorted. We are currently resolving some issues with the iOS 5 version and an update should be there sooner than expected.

Apologies for any inconveniences caused. I hope you all love the App and find it useful.

Peace out

Why make an App for Trains in Morocco

Posted: October 10, 2011 in Articles

I have been working on iPhone apps for a while now, and i have been thinking of working on an app for my own account for the past year, but i didn’t just want to make any random app just for the sake of having one on the App Store. I wanted to make something useful and I wanted to make it free and available to everyone.

For the past months i’ve been traveling back and forth to the UK and every time i found it very daunting to plan train journeys mainly because of the lack of access to information essentially when you don’t have a good 3G internet plan (which costs an arm and a leg) or WiFi access.

In the UK i use the trainline app which i think is pretty amazing for a free app and it does the trick. Plus it gives you the ability to save your favourite journeys. Still every time i got to Heathrow it was impossible to get a good cellular network signal, so the best way was to keep the cached timetable on the app and have it ready for when i need to get the train.

If by accident i ended up closing the app and losing the data that i preciously cached for my use when i arrived to London I had to start looking for timetables from scratch. Having favourites doesn’t save or cache in any data either and you will need an internet connection to search for timetables (again). So there you go trainline UK here’s a potential feature to include in your next app update 😉

However, in Morocco the things takes a completely different turn. If you’re taking the train to any airport you need to know where you’re going, at what time, and how to get there. Therefore a first and early visit to the ONCF website is essential for when you’re departing but if you’re coming back good luck finding any hot spots to connect to.

The funniest thing is that train timetables don’t change much and trains are never late if you’re departing from Casablanca airport (Med V) or Marrakech (The station is about 20 mins by taxi depending on traffic). So you can see how important it is to know exactly what time the trains depart. Personally it helps me decide whether i want to rush and get through customs or take my time, spend about 10mins arguing with the taxi driver to get a good bargain for my fare then grab something to eat as I’m usually hungry and don’t get served food on Ryanair flights.

It is also very important to have this sort of information to share with people who are visiting for the first time, as I get asked the usual questions about where to visit and how to get there and i sometimes find myself clueless about what to tell people and it’s embarrassing to say that you don’t know or just say something and people won’t have a clue what you’re talking about (You know what i mean). For instance i was asked about how to get to Essaouira from the airport in Marrakesh and i ended up sounding like i was reading a page from Wikipedia or a travel book (like Essaouira is about 200Km from Kech to get there you need to get a taxi from the airport to the coach station…).

So there you go this is how i came up with the idea to make the app and the reason why i spent the past two months working on it.

However, on a personal note i did it is because i enjoy/love working on Apps especially if it makes my life and everyone else’s life easier. I also think it’s the best way to keep the late Steve Jobs legacy going, and hopefully as developer inspire others. I’m planning to work on providing other (useful/Inexpensive/Ad free) apps for Morocco so keep an eye on this blog you can sign up to the Facebook page if you like to get everything from facebook.

The main features of this app are the ability to search from the Map and by picking your departure and arrival from the list of stations. That way you get to know where you’re going and how you can get there. The map gives you the ability to look at the train lines and whether you can get to your destination either by train (Red Pins) or coach (Green Pins).

The app itself is very light and uses about 3Mb of memory on your iPhone. It’s Bug free and won’t crash on you when you need it most. It has no adverts whatsoever and there are more updates to come and new features for future versions ahead.

I hope you’ll find it useful.

Amine Jaidi

Check out the app available now on the App Store

You can find us also on Twitter and Facebook

TrainTimes Morocco is the fist iPhone app which gives offline access to train and coach stations throughout the country. Stay tuned for more 😉