Bristol API Challenge winners launch ‘Tiny Tours’ app

Back in January, the UrbanThings team travelled to Bristol to help run the first Bristol API Hackathon with Connecting Bristol. The day’s brief was to produce an innovative solution to a transport-related problem, and after careful consideration, the day’s worthy winners were Blue Sparrow Apps.

After celebrating their win, Blue Sparrow continued to develop their idea, and sixth months later have launched their free Tiny Tours app on Android and iOS.

Launched just in time for the summer holidays, Tiny Tours targets parents and children in the Bristol area, helping them find places to go and experiences to enjoy as a family.  Excitingly for us, it uses the UrbanThings Bristol API to power its journey planning suggestions, displaying easy-to-use public transport routes that take you and your family on a quick and easy day out.


UrbanThings CEO Carl Partridge praised the app, saying: “it’s very rewarding to see this app being brought to fruition, and we hope it will encourage other Bristol developers to sign up to the next event in the autumn.”

Congratulations to James, Laura and Ryan at Blue Sparrow, we look forward to seeing how the app grows and we will certainly showcase it at a future Hackathon!

Shape the future of our apps: become an UrbanThings beta tester

As UrbanThings expands TripChecker into new cities and countries, we rely on user feedback to ensure it continues to be a great app with accurate travel information.

If you’d like to be part of that process, then there’s still time to join our all-new beta testers group. Our testers will receive exclusive early access to new versions of our apps and a chance to shape the future of our products.

To be a beta tester it doesn’t matter where you live, but at the moment we’re particularly interested in hearing from smartphone users in the Sydney area.

If you would like to join the UrbanThings beta tester family, please click here.


TripChecker Launch Party

On Wednesday evening we celebrated the release of our latest app TripChecker with a perfectly sized launch party at Hex Cycling.

It was a great opportunity to reward the team’s hard work with a few beers and the odd glass of wine (or two or three). We also invited a number of our business friends and the Accelerator family – thanks very much for coming!

Last but definitely not least, don’t forget to download Tripchecker (and BusChecker) from the App Stores:

Google Play  |  iTunes

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A sneaky peek at Trip Checker

Our newest baby is nearing its delivery date.

Trip Checker builds on UrbanThings’ signature apps to deliver a unique, global experience.  A true ‘take anywhere’ transit app that gives up-to-date travel information and live times in key cities around the globe.

We’re launching next week – but you can check out the main site here to whet your appetite!

Next Bristol API Developer Engagement Day Confirmed

We’re pleased to confirm the date and theme for our next Developer Engagement Event in Bristol – “A Cleaner, Leaner Bristol”.

How can we use data to help create a city that has better air quality, and has fewer single-occupancy vehicles guzzling gas and contributing to congestion?

  • Making it easier to use electric vehicles by finding nearby free charging points.
  • Maximising the capacity of existing vehicles on the roads, whether this be buses, cars, or other vehicles.
  • Promoting the use of other sustainable forms of transport.

As usual, there are some top prizes up for grabs for the most innovative solutions, including a cash prize of £100 on the day, and a chance at winning the year’s grand prize that includes an app design workshop worth £1,000 from leading creative agency Big Mallet.

More details will be unveiled nearer the time; the last event sold out so sign up here for a ticket while places are still available!

Blue Sparrow win the first ‘Keep Bristol Moving’ challenge event

dev_engagement_jan_2016_smallOn 23rd January, an energetic group of developers and innovators came together at the Watershed in Bristol for the first in a series of transport challenges using The Bristol API.

The day’s brief was to use the Bristol API to build an innovative app or solution that helps to solve a transport-related problem.  Transport gurus and expert software developers were on-hand to provide coding advice and top tips.

After a tremendous turnout (we sold out!) and a hard day’s coding, the judges awarded top prize to Blue Sparrow Apps for their innovative app targeted at families travelling together. Their prototype solution mashed up journey planning, transportation routes and POI locations to help families plan a day out on public transport. A proof-of-concept iPhone app presented a journey plan together with an interactive list of useful locations along the route such as cafes, public facilities and tourist attractions.


Blue Sparrow Apps win themselves £100, plus a shot at the year’s grand prize; a digital design workshop worth £1,000 from leading creative agency Big Mallet.

If you’d like to attend the next event, then watch this space for news, as spaces go fast! Or, if you’re a Bristol API user, make sure your account is configured to receive email updates to receive details direct to your inbox.

Launching The Bristol API

The Bristol API logo

Today we joined forces with Bristol City Council to launch The Bristol API, the first city-wide API platform outside of London to launch in the United Kingdom. The Bristol API is a data platform that will provide developers with free access to a wealth of transportation and smart city data from Bristol and beyond.

UrbanThings was delighted to win the tender to provide this solution and have been working hard behind the scenes to deliver a robust, scalable solution to meet the needs of one of the UK’s smartest digital cities.

If you’re interested in putting the API through its paces, register for an account, then check out the online documentation to get started. There’s even a suite of Mobile SDKs to build a mobile app in minutes. If you’d like a practical demonstration, we’ll be running a transport-themed Challenge Event at Watershed on Saturday 23 January. The developer of the most innovative creation will win a cash prize, with the year’s overall winner being awarded £1,000 worth of customised app design assets from leading creative agency Big Mallet.  Register here.

Are you a data publisher, or local authority?  If you’d like your own Smart City API, get in touch – UrbanThings can work with you to launch a branded platform to publish your data and connect with developers in new and innovative ways.