Other network improvements
Continuing with its commitment to making the entire Barcelona transport network accessible, TMB is developing a project to improve independence for the blind and partially sighted.
Along with the Vodafone Spain Foundation, the ONCE Foundation, the TMB Foundation and in collaboration with the Mobile World Capital Barcelona Foundation, it is fostering two pilot schemes with a mobile app and radio frequency beacons that guide blind passengers wishing to board metros and buses.
In the metro, beacons interact with an app on users’ smartphones to guide them safely between the station entrance and the train.
At bus stops, users automatically get identification of the buses stopping there, with the bus number and destination, so that they can decide whether to board or not. At the same time, the driver is alerted that a blind or partially-sighted person is at the stop.
These devices have already been tested in real environments in Diagonal metro station and at a bus stop in the Zona Franca district of Barcelona.
This project is part of TMB’s Universal Accessibility Master Plan, thanks to which measures have been introduced to facilitate mobility for the blind and partially sighted. In regard to the metro, tactile metro maps and a Braille metro guide have been available since 2012.
On buses and the Barcelona Bus Turístic, there are visual and auditory stop warnings and devices with information for the blind outside.
For more information on accessibility in the bus and metro networks, go to “Accessibility and reduced mobility”.
In August 2014 TMB joined the "Barcelona, heart safe city" programme promoted by Associació Barcelona Salut and the Brugada Foundation, with the collaboration of Catalan Ministry of Health, Barcelona City Council, the SEM and the Pharmacies Association, and sponsored by FIATC Assegurances and Philips.
As the result of an agreement, semi-automatic defibrillators are being installed in metro stations, starting on line 1, the busiest. The aim is to ensure cardioprotection in all metro stations, a first in Europe.
The defibrillators are in clearly marked transparent boxes, in the middle of the platform, next to the intercom. They are simple appliances and can be used by anyone, even without medical training. If you suspect that a passenger is having a cardiac arrest, you should first press the SOS button on the intercom next to the box with the defibrillator in. This enables Metro Control Centre staff to notify the emergency services so that they can come to the station. The next step is to remove the defibrillator from the box and follow the instructions. The device monitors the patient's status and applies an electric shock to re-establish heart rhythm.
Heart disease causes 30% of all deaths worldwide and constitute a major public health problem, affecting people of all ages and status. Aside from prevention and publicising a health lifestyle, one effective way to keep the death rate in check is to supply defibrillators to be used within 10 minutes of a cardiac episode, which are crucial.
The innovative Project to provide USB charging on the Barcelona metro began in September 2016 with the introduction of high-powered 3.0 fast-charging points at four stations on the L2 line (on the platforms of Sagrada Família, Passeig de Gràcia and Paral·lel, and in the interchange entrance at Universitat).
The introduction of chargers for mobile devices on urban transport is consistent with Barcelona’s commitment to being a digital and connected city, where 90% of transport users identify themselves as smartphone owners.
Following this trend of transition towards a digital city, TMB is promoting phase two of this project, which consists of carrying out a pilot trial with the Catalan company Yupcharge. Two trains on line 2 of the metro have been equipped with high-powered chargers for mobile devices that passengers will be able to use free of charge to top up the batteries of their mobile devices.
These chargers are located at the two ends of the trains, at a height designed to permit ease of use by people with reduced mobility. They are also easy to locate, indicated by both interior and exterior signs. Each charger is equipped with four USB ports.
Information of interest
The USB chargers include Yupcharge’s Agile Power technology. This provides fast and efficient charging for all connected mobile devices. For Apple devices it will support up to 3 amps, and android devices equipped with the latest generation of fast-charging processors will be able to charge up to 75% more quickly compared to a standard charger. They also use a battery status recognition system when charging, offering the most efficient charge in the minimum time possible. With the introduction of these fast chargers, metro line 2 is once again at the forefront in innovation applied to public transport.
Over 1,000 vehicles in the regular bus fleet and 16 major metro stations have Wi-Fi thanks to Barcelona Wifi, a Barcelona City Council service, which offers free Internet access in public spaces throughout the city.
Wi-Fi installation on buses follows that previously undertaken in major metro stations. It enables public transport users to log on to the Internet and access real-time information on public transport or other topics related to the city of Barcelona.
All stations and buses where the service is available display the Council’s Wi-Fi logo. Wi-Fi on buses and in the metro is free and has a bandwidth of 256 kbps, the maximum permitted under telecommunications legislation.
For more information, go to Barcelona City Council’s Barcelona Wifi website.
Metro stations with Wi-Fi. Sixteen metro stations have Wi-Fi on platforms:
- L1: La Sagrera, Arc de Triomf, Catalunya, Universitat and Espanya
- L2: Sagrada Família
- L3: Sants Estació, Paral·lel, Liceu, Catalunya, Passeig de Gràcia, Diagonal and Lesseps
- L5: Sants Estació, Diagonal and Sagrada Família
How to register
The registration process is the same for all the Barcelona WiFi access points (street, libraries, metro, etc.). It is only necessary to register when connecting for the first time, although the registration expires if a period of six months goes by without having used the service. You need to activate WiFi on your device and connect to the Barcelona WiFi network. For security, you will then be redirected to the access portal where you will be asked to enter an email address and your place of residence, and to accept the term of use for registration. Once registered, you will be able to access the WiFi connection using your email address and the service will redirect you to www.bcn.cat, from where you can begin to browse.
How does the connection work?
The connection is retained from one access point to another (bus-bus, street-bus, metro-bus, etc.). The session remains active as long as it is used for a continuous period of 30 minutes. If you connect from a different device, you will need to repeat the registration process. The speed of the connection is limited to 256 kB of upload and download in order to avoid abuse. Additionally the service has an ethical filter applied by Barcelona WiFi in order to prevent access to questionable content (of a violent, sexual or racist nature).