South African Government Nears Completion of Public Transport Ticketing Upgrade on Buses and Trams – Hardware – Software
The South Australian government is nearing the end of a public transport ticketing upgrade that will allow commuters to pay for buses and trams using their credit or debit cards and smartphones.
As other states continue or plan further upgrades to long-established transport ticketing systems, Adelaide Metro is in the process of replacing end-of-life validators on two of the busiest modes of transport from the city.
Only Adelaide’s fleet of 24 trams are currently fitted with readers that accept credit and debit cards – the result of a September 2020 pilot project which installed a single smart validator on each of the trams.
In January, the Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport launched the second stage of the upgrade, which involved the deployment of smart validators on trams and O-Bahn buses.
A spokesman for the Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport said iTnews that Adelaide Metro’s ticketing upgrade was “close to the competition” on buses.
“Work to enable O-Bahn tram and bus smart validators to accept metroCARD/Visa/Mastercard credit and debit cards and enabled smart devices is nearing completion,” the carrier said. speech.
The spokesperson declined to answer questions about an earlier pilot project in 2017 to test NFC technology and barcodes/QR codes as payment on trams and some express bus services.
It is also unclear whether a rollout of smart validators is planned for the rail network, although Infrastructure and Transport Minister Tom Koutsantonis has previously indicated that will be next.
“I have to say the two governments haven’t covered themselves in glory over this,” he told budget estimates last month.
“In other jurisdictions, you can get on a train or tram on public transport and use a credit card, eftpos card, cell phone, Apple Watch, whatever, to pay for your ticket. “
Koutsantonis said the department was leading a “very strong body of work” and would deploy the technology “as soon as possible,” noting the scale of the task.
“There are cost implications, there are practical implications and there are software and hardware implications that we need to update,” he added.
The upgrade to validators on Adelaide’s trams and buses comes as other states, including Queensland, Victoria and NSW, seek to improve their transport ticketing systems.
In Queensland, the government recently extended its new payment system to Brisbane’s first heavy rail section, allowing commuters to pay with their credit or debit cards and smartphones.
After rolling out contactless payment technology in 2019, the NSW government is now turning to digital cards and subscriptions as part of a planned $570 million upgrade to the Opal system.
Victoria, meanwhile, has begun a protracted process to replace the operator of the Myki ticketing system, bringing with it the ability to enable and disable the use of contactless credit cards.