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"Amadeus Consulting has a wide breadth of knowledge and experience that has contributed significant value to this venture. They have helped us navigate the technology and create an intelligent and easy-to-use enterprise system." 

-  Lisa Dumont, B-cycle


Success Spotlight

B-cycle Enterprise System


Brief Summary


Challenge:
B-cycle wanted Amadeus Consulting to build an enterprise level member portal on kiosks for new patrons that would not only handle transactions, but also track user statistics such as distance and carbon offset.
Solution:
Drawing on our extensive experience with hardware integration, Amadeus Consulting integrated custom software on custom hardware, a challenging but rewarding experience. The kiosk application was built with Microsoft Silverlight to enhance the Rich Internet Application feel.

Technology/Application Information


Industry
Consumer Discretionary
Application Type
Ecommerce
Data Collection and Management
Hardware Integration
Mobile App Development
24x7 Software Support
Client Type
Startup Entrepreneur
Private Company
Business Need
Create New Business

The Business Challenge

B-cycle is a company formed by powerhouses Trek, Humana and Crispin Porter + Bogusky, who came together to change the landscape of American cities through a bike-sharing program. B-cycle is not your average third generation bike-sharing program, but is considered "fourth generation" because it is incorporating smart technology, such as RFID tracking and process automation into the solution. Each of the companies are in a unique position to make this successful by making bikes accessible to everyone in order to increase the health of users and lower carbon emissions in B-cycle cities.

The B-cycle bike was specially designed by Trek to be easy for inexperienced riders to use and rugged enough for fleet operation. It's perfect for getting people of all shapes, sizes, and bicycling experience around town. Personalized B-cycle web pages provide detailed information to its users on each ride: distance traveled, calories burned, and carbon offset.

The solar-powered B-cycle stations are modular and scalable, and they are designed for easy installation and sensitive integration into a wide variety of urban landscapes. The company's communication, design, and marketing, developed by Crispin Porter + Bogusky, are focused on the needs of modern communities. The visual design creates an iconic look that will become a readily identifiable element in tomorrow's streetscapes.

B-cycle came to Amadeus Consulting after being referred by Crispin Porter + Bogusky because of our proven track-record of success with large-scale enterprise systems. Additionally, B-cycle had learned of our extensive experience working with start-up companies, and felt assured we would be able to handle the dynamics of its business.

B-cycle wanted Amadeus Consulting to build an enterprise-level member portal on kiosks for new patrons that would not only handle transactions, but also track user statistics such as distance and carbon offset. The portal also needed an administration tool for B-cycle employees to manage the website, as well as a slick and creative front-end.

B-cycle tasked Amadeus Consulting with building robust and multi-faceted enterprise-level bike-sharing platform. To support back office operations, the applications needed to provide a rich feature set in addition to process automation, operations analytics, and proactive event management. To serve end users, the solution needed a secure e-commerce engine and a slick rich user experience both from the web and the fully automated bike rental kiosks. This software would need to have several levels of interaction including: locally on kiosks and globally with a cloud-based server.

The goal for B-cycle is to create the largest, most accessible and successful bike-sharing program in the US. Because of Amadeus Consulting's sustainability practices including our status as a zero-waste company, and environmental and community involvement with our BLAST! program, Amadeus Consulting naturally was very excited to be involved in this endeavor and was a perfect fit for B-cycle.

The Solution

Drawing on our extensive experience with hardware integration, Amadeus Consulting integrated custom software on custom kiosk hardware, a challenging but rewarding experience. The kiosk application was built using Microsoft Silverlight™ to enhance the Rich Internet Application feel. Additionally, our development team created the back-end Web Services and Administration tool for B-cycle users and B-cycle managers to be able to access and manage information anywhere.

In order to have the different levels of interaction locally and globally, Amadeus Consulting leveraged WCF (Windows Communication Foundation) which allowed the Silverlight application to interact with the kiosk and its main server. Radio frequency identification tags (RFID) are incorporated to prevent theft.

Additionally, SQL Server Reporting Services were employed in the application to allow B-cycle to track user information, while Auth.Net handles the credit card-based transactions. In addition to the enterprise system, B-cycle asked Amadeus Consulting to create a mobile application presence for them. The Amadeus Consulting Mobile Team created both an iPhone™ application as well as an Android application that enables B-cycle users to locate their nearest B-cycle bike station, get directions, access their Web account and visit the B-cycle website.

The project was divided into several deployments, allowing B-cycle to tangibly see the progress and Amadeus Consulting to tackle challenges in short, well-executed sprints. B-cycle has been extremely pleased with the project and is currently employing Amadeus Consulting for future phases.

B-cycle officially launched the company's inaugural city in Denver on April 22nd, 2010 to much success and has launched in several other US cities including:

  • Chicago/University of Illinois, Illinois
  • Kailua, Hawaii
  • Des Moines, Iowa
  • Louisville, Kentucky
  • San Antonio, Texas

B-cycle is rapidly expanding and adding many other US cities soon.

As a result of the successful project and proven track record, B-cycle also elected to use Amadeus Consulting's 24x7 support and monitoring, in order to create a consistent and maintainable environment for its Web, Kiosk and Bike computers. The 24x7 Support Team provides real-time, continual coverage that tracks the health of the system, as well as giving proactive support to individual issues if they arise.


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