Railways increasingly use mobile ticketing to speed passenger access
Railways worldwide are increasingly using mobile ticketing which enables passengers to purchase and board trains using their smartphones and tablets.
"Mobile ticketing is rail transport's newest offering, which is quickly gaining presence and boosting passenger volumes," says Frost & Sullivan automotive and transportation research analyst Shyam Raman.
"With the growth of application stores and the use of personal computing devices such as tablets and smartphones, rail operators across the globe have been pushed to increase their mobile presence," Raman says.
At the same time, reluctance on the part of some travelers--along with server crashes and spotty internet access--is holding back mobile ticketing adoption. "Rail operators will have to strategize to deal with resistant customers in order to popularize mobile ticketing. They must also address server-related issues to support this endeavor," Raman says.
Across industries, mobile ticketing is expected to reach nearly 1 billion users by 2018, predicts Juniper Research, with much of the growth coming in the transport sector. The market research firm notes that mobile ticketing by airline passengers took off with the implementation of barcoded boarding passes in 2010.
In addition, subway systems have begun deploying mobile ticketing technology for riders. For example, the "T", Boston's subway system, introduced mobile ticketing in late 2012, and within seven weeks, mobile ticketing accounted for 10 percent of ticket sales, according to Juniper.