River Tamoor Baig on technological advances in the UK rail industry

OPINION / 18th September 2018

Upward investment from Government, increased competition from digital start-ups and a desire to improve the customer experience, are all factors driving technological change within the rail industry.

Ahead of InnoTrans 2018 in Berlin this week we spoke with Hack Partner’s Founder River Tamoor Baig, about how tech is changing the UK rail industry right now, and where the sector is heading.

Here’s an at-a-glance look at what he had to say:


  • Over the next five years the UK rail industry will receive £48bn of investment to improve services across the network
  • New stations, new signalling systems and new tracks will mean faster trains
  • As digital signalling improves, automated rail travel will become possible, improving capacity on trains and reducing congestion at stations



  • Multiple journey planning is becoming a reality, with the likes of Uber driving this change
  • Train operating companies will need to integrate and connect with these organisations to take advantage of new revenue streams


Real-world innovation in the UK

  • Chiltern Railways and SilverRail have developed and trialled a piece of tech that allows passengers to walk into a station, get on a train and walk out of another train station at their destination, without having to physically hold a ticket
  • Passengers using the specially designed app on their smartphone, can either purchase a ticket before travel, that sits on the app, or can turn up to a station and walk on to a train without a ticket; they will be billed for that journey on arrival at their destination


Future travel

  • The future of train provision will be a hybrid of flexible, on demand travel, as well as scheduled mix travel


Innovation from around the globe

  • Swiss Rail has pledged that by 2019 it will have the most technologically advanced railway station on the entire planet – including autonomous vehicles for car parking, to having stations that are personalised to passenger requirements


ORM is proud to take part in InnoTrans 2018 in Berlin, and to sponsor HackTrain 5.0 in London this November. Look out for our unabridged video interview with River Tamoor Baig in our upcoming ebook – sign up to be one of the first to receive a free copy.

Fill in the form below to be sent a copy of the ebook when its released. 

Amy Creeden Amy Creeden Senior Marketing Manager Amy Creeden