April 11, 2012

Cubic unveils NFC-based fare collection system

Cubic Transportation Systems introduced Nextaccount, the first of several new products in Cubic’s solution systems portfolio for the next generation of fully integrated automated fare collection (AFC) systems.

The new platform provides the Near Field Communications (NFC) and contactless smart card interface and transit fare processing engine that enable transit operators to give travelers the convenience of using an account to pay for travel or using open payment fare media, such as contactless bank-issued credit, debit and prepaid contactless smart cards, as well as transit-issued smart cards, as their ticket.

Nextaccount will also pave the way for mobile payment and ticketing solutions in transit, giving travelers the ability to pay transit fares directly at the point of travel with NFC-equipped mobile phones. It will also collect payment from any other smart card-based “secure token” that is linked to an account such as transit-issued contactless smart cards or employer and student ID cards that conform to the ISO 14443 contactless standard.

For transit agencies who don’t want to issue their own fare cards, moving to open payment reduces the need to procure, encode, distribute, and support literally millions of magnetic tickets or contactless smart cards. It will also reduce the amount of cash collected, reduce cash handling costs and the associated infrastructure investments, and reduce fraud and fraud management costs, according to Cubic.

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