Presented by Infineon
Nearly 70% of the world’s population will live in cities by 2050, according to an estimate by the UN. For these cities to work, they’ll need smart transport systems that are efficient and easy to use. Efficiency will be enabled by good design and continuous development, paid for by ticketing revenue. Ease of use will be enabled by flexible ticketing solutions that help users get what they want from the transport system, while ensuring that operators can provide it in a way that protects their current revenue and enables future opportunities.
The challenge here is that many public transport operators (PTOs) currently collect fares using closed-loop applications and smart cards. This approach is fine, but its implementation often relies on proprietary contactless technologies that lock PTOs into using a single supplier. Some proprietary systems have limited security features or may limit opportunities to interoperate with other systems in future. Since transport networks tend to become more valuable the more users they have, anything that limits the ability of a PTO’s network to grow, not just physically but through interoperability, will be to the detriment of the PTO and its passengers.
Open standards open up so many possibilities
The alternative is to use an open standard, created by a group of stakeholders, which anybody can work with on equal and transparent terms. Such standards are enhanced by the formation of an independent body to certify the compliance of any products and services that use them. Open standards enable competition among technology providers. They also protect those who invest in infrastructure, equipment, and software that use them, by enabling multiple sourcing of critical components. This lowers costs and improves security by bringing more scrutiny to bear on products that implement the standard.
Open standards, also, crucially, enable greater interoperability between tickets, terminals, and other products and services that could gain value by being integrated into a well-designed transport ticketing system. A simple example: imagine that the ticket you use for your morning commute also carries the loyalty card for your favourite coffee place. You’re more likely to use the loyalty card and receive the rewards for doing so because it is already in your hand, while the shop is more likely to benefit from your regular custom.
CIPURSE: The open transport standard
CIPURSE is an open transport standard, managed and developed by the OSPT Alliance. It supports today’s card and tickets and provides an evolution path toward multipurpose solutions that include mobile ticketing without compromising on security.
It provides a useful bridge between the proprietary systems of today, which are likely to be in place for years to come because transport infrastructure evolves slowly, and the implementation of complex future-ticketing solutions and multifunctional cards that can also be used for loyalty schemes and access control.
For example, CIPURSE can work alongside EMV debit and credit cards. PTOs can set up the CIPURSE implementation to handle legacy closed-loop ticketing and regular commuter tickets with the installed base of ticketing terminals, and then use the EMV side of the solution to support ticketing arrangements for one-time commuters or visitors who can use their own EMV payment cards or devices. Related services such as loyalty cards, usually implemented in a closed-loop environment, can be initially deployed on the CIPURSE side of the solution and then migrated to the EMV service if that will create more value.
Revenue protection is important for PTOs, because it provides the money to operate, maintain, and develop their services, and so any new ticketing solution must have a credible security implementation that will work for the long term.
CIPURSE can be implemented on various platforms, from simple tickets to mobile phones and even wearables. For mobile implementations, CIPURSE can be integrated into SIMs or eSIMs, or take advantage of the secure elements embedded in many smartphones. Wearable devices usually have secure elements, too, and near-field communication capabilities that can be used to implement CIPIRSE in a device such as a watch or fitness band for payments, ticketing, access and multiple additional security-related transactions.
CIPURSE technology could also be used to provide secured access to transport infrastructure, in order to enable technicians to upgrade and maintain transport terminals in the field. This could be achieved using the slots that many transport terminals already have for secured access modules. Infineon offers support to help terminal system integrators to manage upgrading their terminal infrastructure.
Examples around the world already in use
Infineon has shipped more than two billion ICs worldwide for use in transport systems so far, and is experienced in delivering high-quality, secured devices at the prices necessary for high-volume use.
Technology implementing CIPURSE standards is already appearing in practical applications around the world. For example, the T-Mobilitat smart-city solution in Barcelona connects the public transport system with privately-run services and amenities such as bike sharing and car parks. It’s enabled by CIPURSE.
In the U.S., a Washington State ferry company is using CIPURSE to enable customers to buy QR code tickets on their smart phones, online or at the ferry terminal. The technology has also been implemented to manage bus fares in Colombia, while in Brazil travellers can use CIPURSE to pay for a bus ride or a taxi.
The real promise of CIPURSE is to go beyond transport, into applications such as loyalty cards, access cards for building entry, and more complex services that would be easier to use if they were managed through a single token, be it a smart card, a key fob, a mobile phone, or a wearable device.
CIPURSE offers PTOs a way to shift to a more open, secured, and competitive ticketing solution that has rich functionality of its own, which can be integrated with EMV implementations for more complex ticketing applications, and which can support multi-application implementations on a variety of physical platforms.
If networks really do become more valuable as they add users and services, CIPURSE provides a pathway for PTOs away from lock-in and towards a more open, secured, and innovative future.
Ursula Schilling is Director, Payment and Transit at Infineon Technologies AG.
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