"We are much more than just Wi-Fi"
Colibri (Coach Link for Broadband Information Exchange) is available in over a thousand vehicles throughout Germany. Often, it simply means customers are offered Wi-Fi. But in fact there is much more behind the IT solution from DB Fahrzeuginstandhaltung.
For some years now, DB has been increasingly focused on expanding its internet availability for passengers. As a result, the Colibri Wi-Fi component in particular has made a name for itself in regional transport. A dramatic expansion in mobile internet usage, for example in the Rhine-Main and Stuttgart S-Bahn trains, has meant that the other components of the IT solution fell behind for a while. But Colibri is more than just Wi-Fi.
Modular and bespoke – simply customer-orientated
The Colibri product portfolio has a modular structure: it is not a complete package of distinct solutions. It is seen more as a platform that offers not only its own products and services, but also those of other companies – in a similar way to an app store. The products and services are put together in accordance with the needs of the customer and implemented in the vehicles. The products include Wi-Fi for customers, video surveillance, diagnostic tools, an automatic passenger counting system, passenger information, an installation service and a system operation service. Customers also have the opportunity to develop and implement new or their own business and refinancing models.
Keeping the goal in focus
Over 1,000 vehicles equipped with Colibri are already in operation on the network. As part of the largest redesign project to date for the Elbe-Spree network, 145 double-decker coaches and 29 locomotives are being modernised by DB Fahrzeuginstandhaltung at the Wittenberge maintenance depot and equipped with the complete product portfolio of the IT solution. This means Colibri will finally be able to present the complete diversity of its products. The goal is to become an all-round IT product for regional transport that enjoys increased awareness in the market.
"Equipping so many vehicles with such a wide range of IT systems in a comparatively short time is only possible with strong partners. I am all the more pleased that the idea of building a kind of app store for trains has been so well received by the market and that we are working together with many non-DB companies to implement the requirements," says Melvin Zinngrebe, Head of On-board IT. "We are constantly developing our product further and using the latest technologies. Colleagues have plenty of ideas for how to make Colibri a trend-setter." So there is still lots to look forward to.