Sydney’s smartcard technology already behind the times

With the roll out of Sydney’s new ticketing system, the Opal card, starting on December 7, some transport experts are claiming that the system is “old technology”, already being replaced around the world.

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, one analyst claims that the Opal card is 10 years too late, due to the rise of mobile phone and contactless credit/debit card payment systems. Meanwhile, other experts say that after a long history of ticketing problems, the NSW government is right to play it safe with a mature and tested technology.

Recent technological innovations include the smartphone app-based ticketing solution in Massachusetts Bay (US), and a ‘swipe and go’ contactless credit/debit card payment system to be implemented in London next year.

NSW’s Transport Minister Gladys Berejiklian said that the Opal cards could be updated to support mobile and other payment technologies down the track, but their focus for the time being is to roll out the system so that all customers can use it easily.

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