Motorola, Inc. announced the successful completion of the Automatic Fare Collection system field trial implemented for the Transport Authority of Berlin. The smart card electronic ticketing solution achieved a new standard of passenger convenience and operator efficiency.
“The ERG Motorola Alliance implemented the system on time and it performed exactly as planned,” said Francois Dutray, vice president and general manager, Motorola Worldwide Smartcard Solutions Division (WSSD). “The pilot established a clear business case by meeting all of the BVG’s goals: more efficient utilization of assets, helped reduced operational costs, increased customer convenience and improved operating information for transportation providers. They were able to measure passenger streams with much greater accuracy, allowing them to synchronize resources with demand. We were proud to take the lead in implementing this global showcase of next-generation AFC and multi-application smart card system technology,” said Dutray.
Dozens of transportation organizations from around the world visited to gain first-hand experience with the groundbreaking system. Many are considering contactless solutions and were impressed with the enhanced convenience, shorter lines and improved asset management – all of which were on display in Berlin.
“We were particularly pleased to be able to demonstrate the ability of the Alliance to deliver such a sophisticated system in a relatively short time frame,” commented Peter Fogarty, ERG Group’s chief executive.
Work began on this innovative system in March 1999, when the BVG contracted with the ERG Motorola Alliance to conduct a field trial to provide transport riders in Berlin and the surrounding greater Brandenburg area with an efficient smart card payment option. The first phase of the trial began in October 1999. Full pilot program implementation began January 15, 2000 and ended April 15, 2000.
During the field trial of the AFC “tick.et” system, a select group of public transit riders throughout Berlin and Brandenburg paid time- and distance-based fares using one smart card to access and transfer between buses, trains and trams run by the BVG, the S-Bahn Berlin GmbH (Rapid Train System of Berlin), and the VBB (Transport Authority of Berlin- Brandenburg). Public transport “units,” purchased with cash or electronic transfer payments, were loaded directly onto a smart card and then debited by special contactless check-in/check-out terminals at the stations or in buses and trams. Users were able to keep track of their available units by inserting the cards through readers at points-of-sale, information terminals or with the help of pocket-sized balance readers.
“Using bus and rail will become much easier in the future with cashless smart cards and the end of tariff zones,” said Peter Strieder, Berlin Senator for Urban Development. “That surely is a step in the right direction for the BVG because each and every passenger is important.”
“For the economy, electronic ticketing is of great importance,” said Wolfgang Branoner, Berlin Senator for Economy and Technology. “It will result in unique know-how, allowing Berlin to become the prototype for the development of similar solutions for other major cities in the future.”
What the future holds
The BVG’s ultimate objective is to design a multi-application smart card-based AFC system that can be applied to all national transportation services in and around Berlin, and also to the regional transportation services offered by Deutsche Bahn AG. An essential capability of the system will be to calculate the cost of a fare based on both the time and distance traveled. The BVG’s goal is to have this kind of system implemented by the end of 2002.
Eventually, public transportation authorities can award discount points to frequent users, redeemable for more public transport credits or for reduced admission prices to area events. In addition, retailers can offer discount points or special prices to shoppers using smart cards. The groundwork exists for e-purse applications allowing riders to purchase a cup of coffee and a newspaper, board a bus, and transfer to a subway or taxi without searching for cash. The smart card can be reloaded via ATM-style add-value machines.
“It is of paramount importance that electronic ticketing with multi-application capabilities be introduced to the entire network,” said Peter Giesecke, Chief Administrative Officer of the Teltow-Flaming District and Head of the Supervisory Board of the Transport Authority of Berlin-Brandenburg VBB). “The offer of multiple uses, such as information retrieval, payment, loyalty or parking, will generate new incentives to carry and use the card.”
The Technical University of Berlin (TU Berlin)
Motorola currently is implementing a smart card system with multiple applications for the Technical University of Berlin — an identification card and application platform capable of securely accessing university services over the Internet. It is based on a contacted/contactless dual interface smart card that will be compatible with Berlin’s transit automated fare collection (AFC) system. This will mark the first time in Europe that an ISO 14443 Type B dual interface smart card will be used for a multi-application system, and the first time a university card system will be fully integrated with a smart card transit AFC system. Motorola will provide system integration, smart cards, card accepting devices and consulting for the TU Berlin CampusCard(TM) system.
The announcement of the completion of the Berlin field trial was made at the Smart Card Forum’s Quarterly Conference, “Cards on the Move,” hosted this week by Motorola’s Worldwide Smartcard Solutions Division at Motorola University in Schaumburg. The event showcases smart card transit applications from around the world and offers attendees – leading users and technologists from the public and private sectors — to examine how financial institutions, universities, government agencies and retailers are connecting to transit, toll and parking projects to use smart cards for multiple purposes.
About The ERG Motorola Alliance
The ERG Motorola Alliance combines ERG’s world-leading smart card and magnetic ticket based integrated fare collection application expertise with Motorola’s innovative M-Smart(R) world of flexible smart card platform solutions, its systems integration and its operational management capabilities. Complementary strengths of the Alliance include complete wireless voice and data communication systems; location tracking and management; revenue management expertise; systems integration and operating services capabilities; and electronic purse operating experience.
About Motorola Inc.
Motorola, Inc., (NYSE:MOT) is a global leader in providing embedded electronic and integrated communications solutions. Sales in 1999 were $33.1 billion. Motorola’s Worldwide Smartcard Solutions Division (WSSD) provides complete multi-application smart card system solutions including smart cards, application development, systems integration and operations management. The company’s platforms allow organizations to quickly deploy and build value-added smart card applications in areas such as transit, access control, campus, government and healthcare.
About the ERG Group
ERG Group is a world leader in the development and supply of technologically advanced smart card systems and services, automated fare collection products and systems and telecommunications products and services. ERG provides turnkey solutions to customers, from design and manufacture to supply, installation, commissioning and ongoing service and maintenance. ERG operates globally and has 22 offices in 14 countries. ERG is listed on the Australian Stock Exchange and ranks in the S&P – ASX Top 50 Index, as well as the MSCI (Morgan Stanley Capital International Index). For more information about ERG please visit: [www.erggroup.com]