Author Archives: matt

Bangkok Blue Line and Purple Line finally connected

A full year after the MRT Purple Line opened, the 1km ‘missing link’ between the Blue and Purple Line has finally opened in Bangkok. This means passengers can now change trains at Tao Poon, rather than needing to take a shuttle bus and get stuck in traffic.

The change to the metro map is shown below!

We’ve updated our Explore Bangkok maps for iOS, Android and the web with the change – the new versions should automatically update to your device in the next few days!

Tuas West Extension opens in Singapore

The Tuas West Extension has opened in Singapore, adding four new stations on to the Western end of the East-West line. The new stations are Gul Circle, Tuas Crescent, Tuas West Road and Tuas Link.

The 7.5km above-ground extension was first announced in 2011, and will increase connectivity to the Tuas area. Tuas Link station is close to Tuas Checkpoint, for access to the Malaysia–Singapore Second Link.

We’ve updated our online map at www.exploresg.com as well as our Explore Singapore Android app and Explore Singapore iOS app with details of the new stations, first/last train times and journey fares.

Shanghai Metro opens later on Friday and Saturday nights

The Shanghai Metro have announced late night openings on several lines on Friday and Saturday nights. Lines 1, 2, 7, 8, 9, 10 will all open up to an hour later, in many cases staying open past midnight.

We’re updating our metro maps to be able to provide accurate last train times. You can see a sneak preview of this feature below: by default, you’ll see first/last train times for today, but you can quickly toggle to another day of the week.

We’ll be launching this first on Explore Shanghai for iOS, with updates for our Android app and web version coming soon. We’ll also then add updated times for other cities which have different opening times on the weekend, like Explore Singapore.

Subway Line 16 opens in Beijing

The northern section of Line 16 has opened in Beijing, bringing the total number of lines in Beijing to 18, with a total route length of 574km. Line 16 connects Xiyuan on Line 4 with Bei’anhe, in Haidian District. In the future Line 16 will stretch as far as 48 km, from Bei’anhe south to Xiaoyueyuan near Marco Polo Bridge, in Fengtai District.

The first train leaves Bei’anhe at 5:25 and the last train at 22:30, the first train leaves Xiyuan at 6:00 and the last train at 22:55.

Here’s the map of the new stations:

We’ve updated our online map, updates for our Android and iOS apps are coming soon!

South Island Line opens in Hong Kong

For years the Southern District of Hong Kong has not had any connection to the rest of the territory by MTR. That all changes starting December 28, 2016 with the opening of the South Island Line.

The line is colored green on the map, and connects South Horizons and Lei Tung on the island of Ap Lei Chau, via Wong Chuk Hang and Ocean Park with Admiralty, where passengers can transfer to the Tsuen Wan Line or Island Line.

The entire line uses driverless operation, and should significantly cut travel times from the south of Hong Kong Island.

We’ve updated our online map, Android app and iOS app with the new line!

Securing the future with ExploreMetro

We recently upgraded all of our metro map app websites to use HTTPS. You’ll notice if you visit any of our sites like Explore Shanghai,  Explore Singapore or Explore Bangkok, that the address bar starts with https:// instead of http://, and there should be a small green padlock icon.

One extra letter may not mean much, but HTTPS ensures that your information is safe and secure when using the internet. It also means no-one can impersonate another site.

We used the free Let’s Encrypt service to get our sites secure online. Only about 45% of page loads on the web are currently using HTTPS. Hopefully, by moving ExploreMetro to HTTPS, we’re helping get to 100% one little step at a time.

Kwun Tong Line extended in Hong Kong

The Hong Kong MTR added two new stations today with the opening of the Kwun Tong Line extension. The line now continues past the previous terminus at Yau Ma Tei to Ho Man Tin and Whampoa, providing access to Whampoa Garden.

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In the future, Ho Man Tin will be an interchange with the East-West corridor, a merger of the West Rail Line and Ma On Shan Line which will open by 2019.

The new stations are now available on our online Hong Kong MTR map and Android app, and an update for our iPhone app will be available shortly.

Quickly switch language in ExploreMetro apps for Android

We’ve added a handy new feature to our Android apps. Previously the apps would use your device language, for example if your phone is set to Chinese, then Explore Shanghai will show the map and station names in Chinese by default. Now you can manually override this by choosing Language in the dropdown settings menu. Here’s how it works:

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You’ll need to update to version 7.0.6 or higher of the Android apps to see the new menu option. You can download our apps from Google Play or if you don’t have access to Google Play, you can download the APK files directly.

MRT Purple Line opens in Bangkok

Bangkok’s newest subway line, the MRT Purple Line opened to the public on Saturday August 6. The new line brings much-needed connectivity to the north of the city, extending 23km from Tao Poon, across the Chao Phraya river at the Phra Nangkhao Bridge, and terminating at Khlong Bang Phai.

Screen Shot 2016-08-07 at 16.08.17

Unfortunately there is not yet an interchange with the existing Blue Line, so at the moment travellers will need to take a free shuttle bus between Tao Poon and Bang Sue, the terminus of the Blue line. There are 15 buses in total, and shuttles will leave every 8 minutes, with the 1km journey taking between 7 and 12 minutes, depending on Bangkok’s notorious traffic.

Fares will cost between 14 to 42 baht.

We’ve updated our online Bangkok metro map with the new line, and updates for our Explore Bangkok iOS app and Explore Bangkok Android app will be available shortly.

 

ExploreMetro comes to Bangkok!

I am delighted to announce Explore Bangkok, the 9th app for ExploreMetro. I recently moved from Shanghai to my new home in Bangkok, and, much like when I arrived in Shanghai ten years ago, I struggled to find high-quality information about the BTS (Skytrain) and MRT (metro) system in Bangkok. Now there’s an map for that 😉

Scenery Samsung Galaxy S5 - 88 - 10-07-2016, 13-03

You can access the app:

The app includes information about:

The app includes a routeplanner, first/last train times, prices, street maps, a “nearby stations” view, and tips for each station. We’ll be working to add better and more accurate information over time, including prices for journeys including multiple services, Thai pronunciations, and more.

Please do download the app, and let me know what you’d like to see added next!