Feeds

Arriva cellphone tickets let mobiles keep you mobile

Bus spotters irate*

Seven Steps to Software Security

Passengers travelling on an Arriva bus can now pay with a wave of their mobile phone, without recourse to NFC, RFID, or any equally high-tech solutions.

The system deployed by Arriva uses a Java client on the phone to sell tickets to the passengers using a credit card or at a PayPoint outlet, the ticket can then be activated on the phone and the passenger shows the phone's screen to the driver, who lets them on the bus.

Arriva Ticket

Collectors of bus tickets won't be amused

Customers don't pay for the data connection for downloading or using the application, except on T-Mobile where the mBlox-provided service doesn't yet work and punters have to pay for their data too, but everyone else just pays for the ticket which can be a daily or weekly pass, or a single-trip ticket.

That ticket can then be used on any Arriva service, except where they're run by Transport for London (where Oyster would be the technology of choice) or park and ride services.

Systems like this usually have some sort of high-tech component, utilising on-screen bar codes or some sort of radio connection, but Arriva's solution just presents the ticket on the screen and expects the driver to be able to spot if it's a fake.

Arriva tells us that the combination of a clock ticking away, along with animated Arriva symbols, would make the ticket hard to forge, and that drivers would be advised of that day's colour (orange in the example, top right) to make things harder for the would-be forger.

It all seems terribly low-tech to us, and we can't help thinking that an NFC-equipped iPhone sporting fingerprint recognition would be a better solution, perhaps combined with some sort of satellite navigation system and an integral teasmade to keep us warm while waiting for the bus. ®

* Those who spot buses probably won't mind, but the subset who collect tickets (yes, they exist) are going to have a hard time.

The smart choice: opportunity from uncertainty

More from The Register

next story
Auntie remains MYSTIFIED by that weekend BBC iPlayer and website outage
Still doing 'forensics' on the caching layer – Beeb digi wonk
Apple orders huge MOUNTAIN of 80 MILLION 'Air' iPhone 6s
Bigger, harder trouser bulges foretold for fanbois
GoTenna: How does this 'magic' work?
An ideal product if you believe the Earth is flat
Telstra to KILL 2G network by end of 2016
GSM now stands for Grave-Seeking-Mobile network
Seeking LTE expert to insert small cells into BT customers' places
Is this the first step to a FON-a-like 4G network?
Yorkshire cops fail to grasp principle behind BT Fon Wi-Fi network
'Prevent people that are passing by to hook up to your network', pleads plod
BlackBerry: Toss the server, mate... BES is in the CLOUD now
BlackBerry Enterprise Services takes aim at SMEs - but there's a catch
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.