Photography by:
  • GCRO

GCRO mobile mapping app

  • Complete
  • Chris Wray

As Internet applications have moved to the mobile environment, governments need to develop new ways to interact with their citizens. GCRO is interested in investigating new internet and mobile phone technologies that will provide innovative ways to connect government and citizens. This project was carried out by two Wits fourth year Information Engineering students – as part of their fourth year engineering project – to establish the feasibility of a mobile phone application for citizens to access government information.

An Android mobile application was developed using a test sample set of People’s Centres in Joburg, supplied by the City of Joburg Corporate GIS department. The application uses the phone’s GPS to determine the user’s current position and calculate the closest People’s Centre. The user can then select one of the People’s Centre from the list of closest centres and obtain more information about the centre (such as contact information for the centre), or request directions to the centre, which are provided on a Google map.

This simple and easy to use demo application has shown that government information and directions to government services can be accessed using a mobile phone. Further research is required establish what GCR relevant GCRO or government data should be made available via mobile phones and to build an application that will be accessible by the majority of mobile users, i.e. not restricted to one mobile phone OS.


The GCRO sends out regular news to update subscribers on our research and events.