It seems like there’s an app for everything these days – so why not one to pay your transit fare?
TransLink’s Compass Vice President Lloyd Bauer says that could one day be a reality, as Compass sensors are capable of being programmed to go beyond the Compass card.
“We have the ability as a base technology – there’s still more work to put it in. One is open payment. Visa, paypass, the tap. The second piece is around the smart phone.”
Bauer says Cubic, the company that built the system, operates fare gates in London that already support smartphone payment.
But if you’re one of those transit riders that hates fishing your card out every time you need to tap, don’t get your hopes up too much – it doesn’t look like a smartphone app will be on the market any time soon.
“The base technology for that is in the readers that we have. But we’re right now focused with get it in, working with the smart card first, and then look to moving to these other ones in the future.”
Bauer says about 550,000 Compass cards are now active, with about 250,000 unique card taps registered per day.