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Five hundred London transport passengers have started trialling a new system using mobile phones to pay for travel.
Capitalising on the hugely successful Oyster smartcard, developed by TranSys, mobile phone company O2, in tandem with Transport for London (TfL), is testing the system during a six month evaluation period.
The Oyster technology was introduced in 2003, since when more then 10m cards have been issued, resulting in just 3% of current customers paying for travel using cash.
Customers involved in the trial ” all regular Oyster Card holders - will have the ”Near Field Communications” technology on their mobiles, which can also be used for cashless payments and ticketing management. Other partners include Barclaycard, Visa Europe, Nokia and AEG.P.
”With more than 10m Oyster Cards issued since their launch, Londoners are now used to, and are comfortable with, this type of payment method,” said TfL director of fares and ticketing, Shashi Verma.
”We are always keen to look at new technology that may be used to keep Oyster at the cutting edge of ticketing systems.”