Feeds

Glasgow subway's new smart tickets aren't, moan passengers

Technical snafu or sneaky excuse for a price rise?

Remote control for virtualized desktops

Glasgow's new smart tickets, for use on the city's underground network, aren't smart enough to count the journeys made, forcing the operator to withdraw carnet tickets at the end of June.

Strathclyde Partnership for Transport (SPT) has named the new system Bramble, eschewing its traditional seafood nomenclature. Bramble, which comprises smartcards and new ticket barriers equipped with smartcard readers, will be phased in following the introduction of a “bridging” ticket that is compatible with both old and new barriers.

But what's most annoyed passengers is that the new tickets won't support carnet-style ticketing allowing a specific number of journeys for a discounted price, despite their enduring popularity.

SPT reckons weekly and daily passes, allowing unlimited travel within a specific time period, will fill the gap, but some passengers will be worse off.*

The SPT claims this is "better value for money", which is true as long as one goes home for lunch, or takes the underground a lot at weekends, but for those shuttling to and from an office the cost of commuting is about to go up.

The problem isn't the Bramble cards, which El Reg understands are smart enough to cope with journey deductions, but the cheaper, disposable, smart tickets which will be issued to anyone not registered with the Bramble system.

Those tickets have the cheapest of ITSO-compliant chips embedded in them. However, the ITSO specification (which ensures compatibility between transport networks' smart ticketing systems) won't allow them to be updated - so they can't be used for multiple journeys under a single, capped fare.

Limiting carnet tickets to those registered with Bramble and issued with a proper smartcard would be too complex, apparently, leaving the SPT with no alternative but to double the cost of commuting in Glasgow.

We've asked the SPT to explain why other options haven't been explored, and if this isn't just an excuse to make more money from the Clockwork Orange, as Glaswegians fondly refer to their subway network, but they've yet to respond to our enquiries. ®

* SPT has clarified that the carnet tickets apply both ways, so the price increase is marginal rather than twice the price, though still represents an increase.

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
YOU are the threat: True confessions of real-life sysadmins
Who will save the systems from the men and women who save the systems from you?
Broadband sellers in the UK are UP TO no good, says Which?
Speedy network claims only apply to 10% of customers
Virgin Media struck dumb by NATIONWIDE packet loss balls-up
Turning it off and on again fixes glitch 12 HOURS LATER
Ofcom snatches 700MHz off digital telly, hands it to mobile data providers
Hungry mobe'n'slab-waving Blighty swallows spectrum
Fujitsu CTO: We'll be 3D-printing tech execs in 15 years
Fleshy techie disses network neutrality, helmet-less motorcyclists
Facebook, working on Facebook at Work, works on Facebook. At Work
You don't want your cat or drunk pics at the office
Soz, web devs: Google snatches its Wallet off the table
Killing off web service in 3 months... but app-happy bonkers are fine
prev story

Whitepapers

Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
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.
Getting ahead of the compliance curve
Learn about new services that make it easy to discover and manage certificates across the enterprise and how to get ahead of the compliance curve.
Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile
Data demand and the rise of virtualization is challenging IT teams to deliver storage performance, scalability and capacity that can keep up, while maximizing efficiency.