Feeds

Visa looks at NYC wave-pay trial, says 'I wanna be a part of it'

No Oyster, Octopus or Orca required

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Visa is joining MasterCard in testing proximity payments systems on the New York City Subway, providing pay-at-turnstile functionality, rather than the stored-credit kind used elsewhere.

Reuters tells us that Visa will be joining the trial, which already enables New Yorkers to buy some subway tickets with PayPass cards (from MasterCard) waved near the turnstile reader. That means payWave users will be able to buy tickets on their credit cards without having to so much as press a button.

The trial, which was launched by MasterCard in July, is more complex than on most mass-transit systems as it involves buying a ticket (for $2 a pop) at the turnstile, rather than loading credit onto a separate application (or physical card) which is deducted when used. Adding Visa's payWave is a significant step as it increases the complexity of the back end, while simplifying the users' experience.

Passengers also have the option to load up with pre-paid tickets online, for which they get a 20 per cent discount, but the important thing is that the entire process is managed by the credit card company rather than any aquatically-branded third party, whose role has been effectively disintermediated.

Quite why all mass-transit ticketing systems are named after sea life is a mystery, but they are increasing in popularity around the world. Removing the third party makes complete sense for the credit card companies, who will now know how you got to the shops as well as what you bought there, even if it will be much harder to implement on a variable costs system such as London's Oyster.

New York, in common with most of the world's metro systems, charges a flat rate for journeys - so a ticket can be bought at the point of departure without the system having to know the eventual destination. London's Oyster system records the point of departure, then collects the fare when the card is read again at the destination* - a process which would be much harder for the credit card companies to replicate.

One way is to simply embed an Oyster Card into a credit card, as Barclays has done. That works, but it's a bodge job that leaves the power in the hands of Oyster and customers easily confused.

So having seen the pre-payment systems inch towards becoming credit cards - such as extending into confectionery and newspapers in Hong Kong - the credit card companies are beginning to turn their cards into tickets, which should at least put an end to cards named after undersea creatures. ®

* Fail to record your destination and you get docked a fiver, so "mind the gap" is joined by "Oyster users are reminded to always touch in and touch out".

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

More from The Register

next story
UK fuzz want PINCODES on ALL mobile phones
Met Police calls for mandatory passwords on all new mobes
Canadian ISP Shaw falls over with 'routing' sickness
How sure are you of cloud computing now?
Don't call it throttling: Ericsson 'priority' tech gives users their own slice of spectrum
Actually it's a nifty trick - at least you'll pay for what you get
Three floats Jolla in Hong Kong: Says Sailfish is '3rd option'
Network throws hat into ring with Linux-powered handsets
Fifteen zero days found in hacker router comp romp
Four routers rooted in SOHOpelessly Broken challenge
New Sprint CEO says he will lower axe on staff – but prices come first
'Very disruptive' new rates to be revealed next week
PwC says US biz lagging in Internet of Things
Grass is greener in Asia, say the sensors
Ofcom sees RISE OF THE MACHINE-to-machine cell comms
Study spots 9% growth in IoT m2m mobile data connections
O2 vs Vodafone: Mobe firms grab for GCHQ, gov.uk security badge
No, the spooks love US best, say rival firms
Ancient pager tech SMS: It works, it's fab, but wow, get a load of that incoming SPAM
Networks' main issue: they don't know how it works, says expert
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
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.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.