A few years ago, my city had an SMS ticketing service for the local public transport. It wasn’t a smooth solution, or a smart one, but it was a hundred times better than roaming around your pockets for the change for the bus fare or fussing around with the paper bus ticket that I lose track of as soon as I enter the bus.
The service was discontinued, as it was deemed a bit old fashioned, like the SMS it self, I guess, but alas, it was not replaced with anything remotely more contemporary or “smart”. I can say for certain that even this rudimentary attempt at making bus ticketing more mobile is sorely missed.
Can We Make Public Transport Smarter?
It’s pretty funny how in the age of smart everything, where our phones double as our credit cards and wallets and just bout anything else, they can’t be used for something as simple as a ticket for public transportation.
However, a bulgarian startup Tickey.Me showed that this can change too, at its pitch at the startup accelerator Eleven. TICKEY is a complete solution for electronic and mobile cards and tickets, and it incorporates contactless cards, validators, turnstiles, vending machines, mobile apps, identification hardware, basically everything from A to Z that you need to turn an old and somewhat irritating ticketing system into something smooth and simple. And that’s what startups are meant to do – right? Make our everyday lives a little bit easier.
Better For Passengers, Public Transport – Or Both?
The advantage of the system is not just for the passengers, though – it also gives full and accurate information about the passenger flow and the transport network to facilitate the decisions making process concerning the optimization of the schedules and the implementation of flexible pricing.
Through the TICKEY MOBILE the passengers can buy tickets and cards for the public transport just by a few taps of their phones – and that’s really all it takes. But there’s more – TICKEY SOCIAL actually allows integration with social networks and gamification, so that transport providers can actually engage their customers in various social campaigns and receive feedback.
And by what I’ve seen, they are playing with the wearables too – let me just give you a sneak preview:
Oh, and I almost forgot the best part – it can be integrated with an existing ticketing system within a month – I hope to see it in my hometown.