US railroad to test Masabi solution
New York’s MTA Metro-North Railroad, working with transit mobile ticketing specialists Masabi US Ltd., will begin testing a smartphone app that will let people buy their train tickets anywhere, anytime and never have to hold a piece of paper. This technology will allow customers to use today’s phones to quickly and securely buy and display electronic tickets thereby avoiding queues at ticket machines or having to use cash on-board trains. During the pilot, select users will be able to download the free app to their iPhone, Android or Blackberry phones. Through the app, these users can buy any type of ticket, one-way, round trip, 10-trip, monthly etc., with any origin and destination, using their credit or debit cards to make the purchase. The time and date stamped electronic ticket shows up on the purchaser’s phone screen as a secure image that a conductor can validate visually. The electronic ticket also shows as a barcode that can be scanned by a conductor’s hand held device to verify that the barcode is valid. Next month, railroad staff will begin testing the mobile ticketing technology including a time measurement study to compare the new method to current on-board ticket selling, collection and inspection. Efficacy and anti-fraud measures also will be tested. If successful, Metro-North Railroad will seek to expand the pilot to its customers.