Feeds

TfL delays wave-and-pay tickets until 2013

Wants more time to make kit 'more robust'

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

Transport for London's (TfL's) plan to introduce contactless ticketing across the whole of its network is likely to happen in 2013, and will not be completed by the end of 2012 as previously announced by the authority.

In October 2010, TfL said it wanted to introduce contactless technology across its transport network by the end of 2012. Contactless tickets will give passengers with contactless-enabled Eurocard, Mastercard or Visa cards the ability to pay using existing Oyster card readers.

The original plan was for the authority to implement 'wave and pay' technology on all 8,000 buses in time for the Olympic Games. However this roll out will now happen on a smaller scale, with the technology being implemented on a selected number of buses before the Games. The full roll out, covering the tube, London Overground, Docklands Light Railway, tram and National Rail service, is not likely to start being implemented until 2013, or possibly later.

A spokeswoman for TfL told Guardian Government Computing that the authority would roll out the technology on all buses by the end of the year, and that it was not going to rush out the contactless ticketing system until it was ready.

Shashi Verma, TfL's director of customer experience, said: "We are leading the world in pioneering this exciting new technology that will make paying for journeys quicker, easier and more convenient for passengers on London's transport network. We will only roll it out once we are confident it is 100% robust.

"To this end it has always been our intention to introduce contactless card payment in stages, and from next month we will begin implementing and testing the new technology on a small number of London's buses."

TfL's business case for contactless payment received heavy criticism from the London assembly's transport committee last November for not being robust enough. The committee also said that the new system may not deliver the financial savings that the authority expects.

TfL has also had to address security concerns around the implementation of contactless payment. While giving evidence to the assembly's transport committee last September, Will Judge, the head of future ticketing at TfL, said that the new system would be 100 per cent safe against "invisible pick pocketing", and that fraudsters would not be able to extract confidential information from a person's contactless bank card or other compatible technology.

Commenting on the latest development, Caroline Pidgeon, leader of the Liberal Democrat London assembly group and chair of the London assembly transport committee, said: "No one is against new technology but the delayed start of wave and pay is a great opportunity to ensure the new technology works properly from day one of its introduction.

"At the same time the mayor and TfL must ensure that whenever it starts people who decide to stick with Oyster pay-as-you-go don't get penalised with higher fares."

This article was originally published at Guardian Government Computing.

Guardian Government Computing is a business division of Guardian Professional, and covers the latest news and analysis of public sector technology. For updates on public sector IT, join the Government Computing Network here.

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
So, Apple won't sell cheap kit? Prepare the iOS garden wall WRECKING BALL
It can throw the low cost race if it looks to the cloud
EE fails to apologise for HUGE T-Mobile outage that hit Brits on Friday
Customer: 'Please change your name to occasionally somewhere'
Time Warner Cable customers SQUEAL as US network goes offline
A rude awakening: North Americans greeted with outage drama
We need less U.S. in our WWW – Euro digital chief Steelie Neelie
EC moves to shift status quo at Internet Governance Forum
BT customers face broadband and landline price hikes
Poor punters won't be affected, telecoms giant claims
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.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.