Melbourne transport users might be able to soon take part in a trial exclusive to only Android users, where they can simply tap on and tap off public transport using an app.
The Myki mobile app will use near field communication (NFC) technology to integrate with existing myki ticket barriers and card readers across Victoria’s trains, trams and buses – wherever you can use myki.
Public Transport Victoria (PTV) said the new mobile ticketing technology will be enabled without the need for new infrastructure or equipment to be built. This is a world first, being done without significant upgrades and costs typically associated with such a project.
Public Transport Minister, Jacinta Allan, has said that the trial will cost taxpayers as much as $3 million on top of the existing $700 million myki contract, which began last year:
“There is a small additional cost for this of between $2 [million] to $3 million to run the whole trial…..This is a very large and complex network that we have, the ticketing system has to work across all those different aspects of it,” Ms Allan said.
The trial of the smartphone app is said to begin within the coming months through a limited, industry-based test group of users on Android devices before extending to a wider, public test group later in the year. PTV has said, though, that the full trial period will run until early 2019, with a decision to be made about bringing the option to more users then.
If you’re interested in finding out more or signing up for updates to take part in the possible Myki mobile app, PTV have advised transport users to ensure their Myki Card is registered and active via the Myki/PTV website.
At this stage, it is unclear when Apple (iOS) users will get access to the trial. Android users will have the first access to the new ticket option.
I didn’t think anyone at MyKi even knew what a computer or smartphone was!
*sigh* It’ll be interesting to see the bizarre ways they manage to screw up the implementation of this. The whole Myki card rollout is like a state joke in Victoria because of how badly it’s been done over the years (especially as other places seem to have implemented smart cards just fine).