Modeshift Computer-aided Dispatch & Automatic Vehicle Location

Optimize efficiency and improve on-time performance

Struggling to find a way to optimize performance? We thought so (it’s not just you, everyone does). Transit agencies, especially those who experience growth pains, are finding it more and more difficult to keep track of their fleet. Our response? An integrated fleet management system that helps keep vehicles and people on track, and is fully integrated within our fare collection product.

What is an AVL (automatic vehicle location) system?

AVL is a system of sensors installed onboard public transit vehicles and connected via a connectivity protocol to a back end. simple direction finding, LORAN-based locating, signpost systems, GPS-based location, sensor-augmented AVL. In recent years, GPS has been proven to work best for the needs of public transportation. The information that is being constantly sent towards the back end is processed in either in real time or at specific intervals and enables transit agencies to monitor vehicles for delays, detours, etc. AVL systems are also necessary for RTPI (Real-time Passenger Information) systems to work.


How does automatic vehicle location work?

Automatic Vehicle Location systems use sensors that are installed onboard the vehicles – these might be part of the fare collection hardware, a component inside the vehicle’s mainframe or simply a tablet/smartphone. These sensors can be programmed to monitor the vehicle’s movement at different intervals – seconds, minutes or whatever works best for the agency. They send GPS signal at the designated interval towards the back end. Connectivity is an important part of the AVL system, and in case it is lost, special back-up mechanisms ensure the back end receives data prognosis in order to calculate the estimated position of the vehicle.


Types of AVL systems

There are two types of AVL systems: passive and active. Passive AVL systems use software to log data for later retrieval. Active AVL systems constantly send GPS signals to the back-end software via a chosen connectivity protocol. Modeshift’s AVL system is of the active type and uses a GPS module (usually as part of the onboard validator).

Benefits of the Automatic Vehicle Location technology

AVL systems are indispensable to any modern transit agency. They can be used to track vehicles in real time, log on-time performance to be used in reporting, or help computer-aided dispatch (CAD) operations. They are also used to inform Real-time Passenger Information (RTPI) systems about arrival and departure times to be displayed at bus shelters, inside mobile apps, etc.

What is CAD (computer-aided dispatch)?

CAD is a software that helps transit agency staff organize the day-to-day operations of the agency. It can be used to create schedules and manage headways. AVL systems facilitate the use of CAD systems by feeding real-time data about every vehicle, making fleet management much more optimized and efficient. Computer-aided dispatch systems are indispensable to ensure the smooth operation of the fleet and for performance monitoring.


Computer-aided Dispatch & Automatic Vehicle Location by Modeshift

Your real-time tool to create schedules, calendars, routes and more


  • Modeshift’s Computer-aided dispatch and Automatic Vehicle Location systems are based on a robust real-time GPS tracking that ensures what you see on your screen is what’s happening on the road
  • Their granular structure is easy to understand and gives staff the flexibility to plan for truly effective transit operations
  • Manage headways for the best possible performance
  • Fully integrated with Modeshift Fare Collection and Reports: you can have everything at a glance, in a single product. This creates a seamless experience for everyone involved in the process

Being on time is now possible, every day and with every vehicle.